Ebay CEO John Donahoe reinforced his belief Thursday that digital currencies are going to play an important role in the future of PayPal, the company’s payment processing service.
In an interview on CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” Donahoe said, “I think there’s no doubt digital currency is going to play an important role going forward, and at PayPal, we’re going to have to integrate digital currencies into our wallet.”
While he couldn’t give a specific time frame on when to expect Bitcoin’s integration, he did talk about the various ways he thinks Bitcoin will be used.
“I think you’ll begin to see Bitcoin used in different use cases, whether it’s a peer-to-peer use case, a cross-border transaction, someone sending currency to someone else, and over time, you’ll begin to see it with some merchants accepting Bitcoin,” he said.
“And I don’t know how big it will get, how quickly, but I do think that the underlying theme of digital currency is something that we are aware of and we are going to pay attention to.”
Donahoe also said that he personally owns some bitcoin, which he buys not as an investment, but to understand how it can be used.
“I think there are two side to it. The investment side, and then the digital currency side. And I’m more interested in the digital currency side, about how you and I can exchange values seamlessly using technology.”
According to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, eBay previously regarded Bitcoin as a “potential competitor” to PayPal. This is likely at least partially due to the fact that Bitcoin transactions can be made for a fraction of the 2-3 percent processing fees that PayPal charges.
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