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Bitcoin: A Friend NOT a Foe to Small Businesses

Op-ed - Bitcoin: A Friend NOT a Foe to Small Businesses

On Wednesday, Bitcoin yet again entered the limelight as the Wall Street Journal highlighted, “More Small Businesses Embrace Bitcoin.” While Bitcoin is still growing in utility, an increased number of brick and mortar businesses are embracing the new digital, decentralized currency.

The Wall Street Journal took time to note the many benefits Bitcoin provides to small businesses including and not limited to avoiding the cash problem but also high credit and debit card transaction fees. With Bitcoin, transaction costs pale in comparison to those of credit and debit card fees. Featuring Adam Sah’s business, in Buyer’s Best Friend Wholesale & Mercantile stores, WSJ writer, Sarah E. Needleman, touched upon the intrigue of the virtual currency. Extended beyond small business owners, venture capitalists are intrigued by the growth potential of the Bitcoin currency and have invested millions of dollars in various Bitcoin related start-ups.

The Bitcoin currency provides an opportunity for all types of small businesses ranging from food services to wholesale shops to transportation and travel companies to most recently cosmetic surgery centers. Just today, Elite Body Sculpture of Beverly Hills and Sacramento, CA signed up to be a merchant of BitPay, Inc, the leading Bitcoin payment processing company. Dr. Aaron Rollins of Elite Body Sculpture shared with the Wall Street Journal that several of his clients asked if he accepted Bitcoin. Once he drew the contrast between the simplicity of Bitcoin compared to the hassle of using cash, Dr. Rollins looked further into the Bitcoin currency and now will work through BitPay to process payments in BTC.

As small businesses serve as the backbone of the United States’ and most economies, Bitcoin is a credible solution to the woes of small businesses. Just last year, when both Chambers of Congress and the Executive Branch struggled to establish a fundamental budget, the US House, Senate and President supported and signed into law the Jumpstart Our Businesses Startups Act (JOBS Act, H.R. 3606) to enhance the ability of small businesses to increase capital. The JOBS Act highlights the critical role small businesses and emerging growth companies play in stimulating job growth and the US economy.

As the House, Senate and President backed the JOBS Act in the 112th Congress and are now implementing this pro-growth legislation, further consideration of the Bitcoin currency should be on the books for the 113th Congress. As the Small Business Administration sizes up options to best facilitate small business growth, a consideration of the Bitcoin currency will be a wise investment of resources. What if the Small Business Administration decided to revamp the already existing grant and loan program with a track for businesses utilizing the Bitcoin currency? Business owners would have greater leeway in finding the best methods of transaction not only to meet customer needs but also to efficiently collect revenue and in turn stimulate the economy.

With many vendors and small businesses already processing payments through iPads and updated computer systems, imagine how simple it would be for customers and business owners to make transactions at any price with the simple scanning of a QR code. Let’s take this a step further. Small businesses and merchants reaching out to an international audience will avoid high currency exchange rates as Bitcoin is a decentralized and international currency.

The answer to small business woes in the US and around the world is a no-brainer: Bitcoin!