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WeMakePrice may accept bitcoin payments

Jan 30,2018

WeMakePrice, an online shopping platform in Korea, is reportedly devising a system to accept cryptocurrencies as means of payment, which could make the company the first major e-commerce firm in Korea to enter the cryptocurrency ecosystem.

WeMakePrice is working with Bithumb, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in Korea, to enable Bithumb users to use their coins to purchase goods. The system would make any of 12 cryptocurrencies currently being traded on the exchange, including bitcoin, Ethereum and Ripple, an acceptable payment method on the platform. The real-time value of the coins would be calculated when a shopper tries to buy something at WeMakePrice, according to a spokesperson for the company.

“It’s true that we are working with Bithumb to sync our payment system with cryptocurrencies as part of an effort to increase the efficiency of the system,” said the spokesperson.

Ticket Monster, another e-commerce company in Korea, is mulling the possibility of adopting a similar system.

If adopted, the new system would render it unnecessary for a WeMakePrice customer to rely on any payment system operated by a third party such as a bank or a card company. It would create a direct link between Bithumb and the platform.

While such a model is touted as one of the benefits of cryptocurrencies, analysts say that without the government clarifying its stance on digital coins, it will be difficult for them to be adopted for regular commerce.

“Nothing has been determined and we are only considering the possibility of the system internally as the government has yet to provide a clear stance on how it will regulate cryptocurrencies,” the spokesperson added. “We will have to wait for government guidelines to determine the exact schedule for any implementation and specifications for the system.”

Some retail companies outside of Korea accept bitcoin in payment, such as Overstock, an online home-goods retailer in the United States.


BY CHOI HYUNG-JO [choi.hyungjo@joongang.co.kr]