Last updated on December 10th, 2013 at 05:47 pm
The Hilton Slussen hotel, in the center of Stockholm, was the spot chosen by the Bitcoin-friendly startup Safello to showcase the first cryptocurrency ATM available in Sweden. The device was developed by the company and allows the users to exchange cash for virtual money.
The Bitcoin ATM was showcased this Monday (9), at the STHLM TECH’s Meetup. After exchanging fiat currency for virtual coins, the users could buy drinks and food on a nearby street using their cryptocurrency, for instance.
During the meetup, the first person to try the machine publicly was David Sonnek, the chief of SEB Venture, one of the top banks in the country, according to Metro’s Swedish version. He managed to exchange money for Bitcoin in no time, while the participants in the event watched.
“We want to bridge the gap between the Bitcoin world and the traditional financial sector. I think this type of machine can do it”, said Safello’s CEO, Frank Schuil.
However, there are still people in the country that aren’t sure about Bitcoin’s possibilities. Claes Hembergsvägen, a savings economist at online broker Avanza, sees cryptocurrency as “a way to stimulate discussions” regarding how the different currencies are controlled by central banks and fiscal policies. Metro quotes him saying that “the value varies terribly much. It’s an interesting exchange, but people don’t want excitement when it comes to their money. They want security”.
Schuil agrees with this point. There’s some uncertainty, of course, and we have seen it recently when Bitcoin’s price dropped more than 35 percent in a few days. “But I think Bitcoin will stay”, he assured.