Richard Branson bets on BitPay

 

Sir Richard Branson has announced he will be investing in a Bitcoin business and buying some of the cryptocurrency.

Branson has taken part in a $30 million (£17.8 million) investment round in US-based BitPay, an online payment processor for the digital currency. He is also thought to have bought some bitcoin himself, making him one of its highest-profile backers.

Branson has spoken out in support of digital currencies and last year let customers pay for his commercial space travel business Virgin Galactic in bitcoin.

That service was powered by BitPay, founded in 2011 and introduced to Branson through one of the business’s early investors. It acts like PayPal for bitcoin and processes $1 million of transactions a day.

Tony Gallippi, BitPay’s co-founder and chief executive, said: “With this round of investment, BitPay is looking to grow internationally.

“We recently set up offices in Buenos Aires, San Francisco, New York and Amsterdam — and with international business figures such as Richard Branson, we are planning to move into other international markets.”

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