Peer-to-peer bitcoin exchange Paxful announced that its platform has fully integrated the Lightning Network, Bitcoin's second-layer scaling solution. The firm, one of the leading peer-to-peer trading platforms worldwide, will now allow its more than seven million users to transact bitcoin across the globe more quickly and cheaply.
"Bitcoin is hands down the best financial option for the people who really drive economies forward," said Ray Youssef, Paxful's co-founder and CEO, in the announcement. "But in order for it to succeed and usher in global adoption, we need to overcome the issue of scale. The industry's greatest chance of Bitcoin scalability is through Lightning, which makes micropayments exceedingly cheaper and faster."
Lightning enables cheap and fast bitcoin transactions by leveraging smart contracts to abstract small and frequent payments away from the Bitcoin network base layer. That abstraction occurs in the form of payment channels, in which users connect by jointly creating 2-of-2 multisig addresses, which they can then use indefinitely to transfer funds to one another. But even though only transactions that either open or close a Lightning channel get recorded on the Bitcoin blockchain, all Lightning transactions abide by the Bitcoin protocol rules.
Indeed, Lightning has already been empowering people worldwide to enjoy true financial freedom and sovereignty. Since bitcoin became an official legal tender in El Salvador on September 7, people have been able to buy coffee, breakfast, and lunch there with BTC through the Lightning Network. The layer-2 solution empowers Bitcoin to fulfill its potential and become a widely accepted medium for transacting value.
"At its core, Bitcoin was envisioned as a means of exchange," said Artur Schaback, the peer-to-peer platform's COO and co-founder, per the announcement. "Paxful's seven million users now have another option to transact micropayments — one that is cheaper and faster than the traditional Bitcoin network."
Paxful's Lightning onboarding was assisted by Lightning Labs, an open-source software company dedicated to the Lightning Network. Their CEO and co-founder, Elizabeth Stark, said the integration "is a huge step forward" in bringing bitcoin to billions of people. Stark later added that her company is "excited to onboard millions of Paxful users who can now send instant, global, low fee transactions with Lightning."