COVID-19 has hit Italy particularly hard. But one challenger bank might use this to its advantage.
Hype is an Italian neobank that has announced a partnership with crypto company Conio to release a cryptocurrency wallet.
With the country under lockdown, Vincenzo Di Nicola, co-founder and co-CEO of Conio, argued that this is the prime opportunity to launch the bitcoin wallet. “People are now becoming more and more cautious of coins and paper money, since there is a fear these may spread the disease. In this scenario, a digital currency may offer cleaner solutions for the future,” Di Nicola told Decrypt.
The new bitcoin wallet will enable customers to sell, buy and store bitcoin.
While other challenger banks like UK rival Revolut have launched similar offerings, Di Nicola, claimed the British business only gave “the impression to manage bitcoin,” but that customers can “neither receive Bitcoin, nor can [they] transfer them: it’s a walled-garden approach that actually defeats the purpose of a cryptocurrency.”
Conio is not the only FinTech company to have mentioned that the COVID-19 crisis might benefit FinTech companies.
When FinTech Global checked in with several European challenger banks last week, the German neobank N26 noted that it had “seen a slight increase in the number of card and mobile wallet transactions” and expected “this trend to continue as more people adjust their everyday habits to reduce the risk of transmission.”
Similarly, new research has suggested that Revolut will be able to grow its customers due to the crisis.
FinTechs could also benefit from being more used to remote working than incumbent financial institutions.
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