Reading Time: 2 minutes

Simplex is a World-Leading Card Payment Processor

Simplex is registered and licensed in the European Union and is a principal member of Visa Europe. Simplex is also the card payment processor of choice by some of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world.

 

Banks Act in Self Interest

A small number of banks do block card payments to Simplex. But it’s not because Simplex is illegitimate; it’s because they may have had cases of stolen credit numbers used illegally to buy crypto through Simplex. It’s the actions of users of stolen credit cards, not the company itself. Credit card fraud is an inherent risk of the card technology itself and is not unique to Simplex. Globally, card fraud losses totaled USD 28.65 billion in 2019 alone. Only a tiny proportion of those losses were to cryptocurrency transactions; most losses were to gift cards and high-value electronic devices. If the banks in question disagree, I challenge them to release their card fraud statistics publically. 

Individual banks’ decision to block payments to Simplex is an operational decision by that bank and usually linked to their general stance on cryptocurrencies. As recently as 2018, many New Zealand banks were still blanket de-risking and closing bank accounts of customers who made even a single cryptocurrency purchase. They have had to back down from this approach due to the tens of thousands of New Zealander’s trading cryptocurrencies and their position was immoral and untenable. Even so, they still target international transfers and card payments related to cryptocurrency transactions. 

The Future is Bright

Most New Zealand banks are behind the rest of the world, with major companies like PayPal and Tesla adopting cryptocurrencies in various ways. The only suggestion we can give you is shifting your business to a bank that doesn’t actively block cryptocurrency transactions. 

“Our philosophy on cryptocurrencies is straightforward: It’s about choice. Mastercard isn’t here to recommend you start using cryptocurrencies. But we are here to enable customers, merchants and businesses to move digital value – traditional or crypto – however they want. It should be your choice, it’s your money.” – Source: Mastercard.com

Visa and Mastercard don’t block cryptocurrency transactions themselves. You can get cryptocurrency debit cards from places like Wirex and Crypto.com powered by Visa and Mastercard. 

“Banks and other financial institutions that embrace cryptocurrencies and other digital assets will flourish, while those that don’t will end up on the wrong side of history and fade into irrelevance.”  – Ross Carter-Brown, Chief Executive Officer, BitPrime.

Reading Time: 8 minutes
Originally Published 07/01/2019 in Altcoin Magazine. Republished with permission from the Author, Patrick Tan.

The Looming Debt Crisis & Cryptocurrencies

Appended to the Bitcoin genesis block, which we celebrated the 10th anniversary of just two days ago was a cryptic message from Bitcoin’s creator Satoshi Nakamoto,

“03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.”

Today, a debt tsunami, the likes of which the world has never experienced before lies on the horizon, but it’s not from banks alone, it encompasses the entire gamut of borrowers. From student loan debt to government bonds, the world has binged on borrowing. Investors, buoyed by access to easy credit, have also sought to purchase increasingly more exotic debt instruments in search of yield. The product of this debt chase has risen to a US$250 trillion debt tsunami — a level which the world has never experienced before and three times what it was two decades ago. And this time, the biggest debtors are also the world’s biggest economies. According to Citigroup analysis of data from the Institute of International Finance, the biggest borrowers include the United States, China, the Eurozone and Japan, which collectively carry more than two-thirds of the world’s household debt, three-quarters of corporate debt and nearly 80% of government debt.

The City of London, home to Canary Wharf and bank bailouts. Mind the gap.

How We Got Here

Debt, in and of itself is not necessarily an economic evil. If nothing else, growing debt is the handmaiden of growing economies. For every borrower, there is a lender for whom a loan or bond is booked as an asset on their balance sheets. But it is this interwoven relationship between borrowers and lenders that is the biggest cause of worry. As the global economy slows and interest rates slowly creep up, borrowers may begin to default on their debt, which could lead to write-downs by holders of such debt and there are large pools of untested borrowing, from distressed asset funds to distressed debt funds which sprouted after the last financial crisis. From China’s shadow banking industry, with large pools of off-balance sheet debt to emerging market borrowing, there are large pools of borrowing that have yet to be stress-tested, regardless of the actuarial models one uses. And with central banks starting to reign in easy-money policies, these pools of borrowing are about to get their first real-world stress test.

Faced with the double whammy of glacial growth and rising rates, the specter of another debt crisis looms and with oil prices continuing to languish, hopes for continued growth seem dim at best. Because the financial crisis was birthed in the credit markets, investors and economists have monitored the growth of debt with a keen eye.

Debt is a double-edged sword — it can spur growth, providing the fuel that business and governments need for investment and infrastructure, but excessive debt, particularly where it is poured into vanity projects or unnecessary infrastructure spending can put a drag on economies and can limit the policy tools available to governments and central banks to respond to downturns.

There is also growing evidence that the debt incurred since the financial crisis has not been put to the most optimal use. From corporate share buy-backs to debt-fueled shopping sprees on the part of consumers, to large-scale white elephant infrastructure projects in China, there is growing concern by both investors and economists that borrowing is not fueling investment in research and development or capital growth. To make matters worse, government debt has grown precipitously in the aftermath of the private-sector borrowing that precipitated the last financial crisis. And it was government debt that ultimately provided the means to power through the aftermath of the last financial crisis as the lender of last resort — but when the chickens finally come home to roost, who will bailout the bailors? There are some analysts who believe that the governments of developed economies have limitless largess with which to expand their debt loads. Guy LeBas, chief fixed-income strategist at Janney Montgomery Scott suggests,

“If nothing else, the 2018 U.S. budget deficit teaches us that developed economies have a lot more room to issue debt without significant consequences.”

The quote is interesting, because it mirrors one made by one-time Scottish financier (and convicted murderer) John Law, who created the world’s first stock market bubble and laid the foundation for the French Revolution, who once famously said,

“I maintain, that an absolute prince who knows how to govern can extend his credit further and find needed funds at a lower interest rate than a prince who is limited in his authority.”

“In credit as in military and legislative authorities, supreme power must reside in only one person.”

Hats were particularly useful for covering one’s lack of empathy. “Let them eat cake!”

The assumption that rich countries can continue to borrow without consequence precipitated one of the most dramatic and violent political upheavals in 18th century France. And it’s not just sovereigns who have continued to borrow, businesses have as well. In the United States, ultra low interest rates have driven a business borrowing binge to 46% of U.S. GDP, based on federal statistics. And while the Trump administration’s tax cuts have boosted business bottom lines recently, there are growing signs that that one-time stimulus is starting to lose steam. The growth of corporate debt relative to earnings has led to a vast downgrade of a variety of corporate bonds to the very lowest levels of the investment grade range, meaning that any sudden shocks to the wider economy could cause widespread downgrades and the painful write-downs consequent to such downgrades.

Emerging Markets or Emerging Crises?

Then there’s the issue of emerging-market debt. In search of greater yield, investors poured into emerging-markets to fund their growth and development. China stands out as one of the biggest binge-borrowers, to fuel infrastructure projects and cities rising out of the desert. This year alone, emerging economies will need to either pay down or restructure nearly US$2 trillion of debt and with tightening monetary policy in the U.S. and other advanced economies, the rise in the dollar, emerging markets will find that debt far more expensive very soon.

The world as a whole is now moving into uncharted territory in that it has not experienced a prolonged zero-rate environment before, nor has it ever had to navigate out of one.

But the impact this will have on the nascent cryptocurrency sector is as yet uncertain. In 2008, the Bitcoin whitepaper was just fresh off the financial crisis and just fresh off the Satoshi Nakamoto’s keyboard. Few had heard of it outside the cypherpunk movement and the Bitcoin genesis block would not yet be mined until January 3, 2009. In countries like Venezuela and Zimbabwe, we’ve seen how Bitcoin helped to supplement or in some cases replace currencies which experienced hyperinflation. Observers have long stated that rich countries like the United States have had no use for cryptocurrencies, given the strength and stability of the dollar and U.S. institutions — the last two years of the Trump administration have challenged that assumption. But will a global debt crisis, send demand for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies soaring?

Cryptocurrencies as a Safe Haven?

As much as I would love to provide a straightforward answer, the complexity of the matter means that one is not forthcoming. In the period from 2016 running up to early 2018, the Trump administration, with its promise of tax cuts and looser regulation for a variety of industries buoyed stock markets from New York to Hong Kong and everything in between. Some of that frothiness naturally spilled over from the stock markets over into the next big speculative bet — the flavor at the time was initial coin offerings (ICOs) which rose in a fashion reminiscent of the dotcom bubble. But as market conditions started to shift in the second quarter of 2018 the irrational exuberance (to steal a phrase from former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan) started to give way to the reality that many of these ICOs would not likely amount to anything within the short to medium term and with each subsequent ICO simply a case of pumping digital token prices simply to dump them, investors soured on the entire asset class (if it could even be referred to as an asset class). But in a situation where liquidity leaves global markets, investors will need to find safe harbor which in typical times of financial trouble have been treasuries and gold. Of the two, if a global debt crisis hits the financial stability of developed markets like the United States, Japan and the Eurozone, these typically safe haven treasuries will no longer provide the safe harbor that they once did, leaving investors pouring into gold — something which investors are already doing and which has sent up the price of gold to its highest levels in over six months. But what about Bitcoin? Which shares many of the same characteristics as the shiny stuff? Although funds have sent the price of gold northwards, clearing the US$1,300 level to extend a New Year rally, a similar trend has not yet been noticed in Bitcoin and Bitcoin’s dollar-denominated trading volumes have in fact decreased. What is perhaps more illustrative is that the daily volume of Bitcoin exchanging hands (according to the Bitcoin blockchain) has been steadily rising throughout the end of last year and the beginning of this one. Based on anecdotal evidence and my conversations with family offices, the bulk of Bitcoin “buys” tend from institutional-grade investors occurs off-exchange — which would support why there’s been renewed interest in the digital asset and although the dollar value trading of Bitcoin on exchanges has fallen, the Bitcoin blockchain has shown steady growth in transaction volume. Bitcoin continues to show resistance at the US$4,000 level, but many institutional-grade investors actually appreciate the price stability as it has allowed them to accumulate a portion of the Nakamoto’s creation as part of a global and holistic portfolio view. According to one manager I spoke to and who spoke on condition of anonymity,

“You don’t want to be the manager who didn’t spot the trend. You want to have a reasonable answer for your clients when they ask you, ‘Why didn’t you at least consider a small allocation in Bitcoin?” Those are not the conversations you want to have.”

In fact, as many Asian family offices now start to deal with third and sometimes fourth-generation scions of established and wealthy families, who have ridden the Asian economic growth story, managers have increasingly had to report to Millennials as well as in some cases Gen Z clients. According to the same manager,

“There’s definitely an interest. Whether or not that interest is enough to make a trend however is less clear. But from a portfolio point of view, there is definitely appetite and because as a proportion of the overall portfolio, the numbers are not substantial, there is some risk appetite for these (cryptocurrency) assets.”

With a potential downturn in the global economy, possibly central bank policy mistakes and rising U.S. and Chinese debt pushing gold prices upwards, it remains to be seen whether or not that push will spillover to Bitcoin. But perhaps and maybe even because it hasn’t, presents an opportunity for plucky investors to bet a little on Bitcoin.

Not quite the same. Yet?

Earlier this week, China’s manufacturing was reported to have shown contraction with key production indicators at Italy (already a country in an economic quagmire) and Poland also showing weakness. And with stocks taking a battering, gold has continued to shine, with ETF holdings adding a staggering 67 tons last month alone — the highest level since June last year.

One indicator to observe, especially if one believes in a positive correlation between gold and Bitcoin is whether or not gold breaks through the all-important US$1,300 psychological barrier. Thomas Lee of research firm FundStrat and a well-known Bitcoin bull, has long held the view that Bitcoin can be viewed as a gold-substitute as a store of value and there is at least some evidence to support that view. Consider that amidst Venezuela and Zimbabwe’s monetary mismanagement, citizens turned to Bitcoin to create a parallel economy and ensure some semblance of currency.

But in the short term, both gold and Bitcoin for that matter may not rise as quickly. On Thursday, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas president Robert Kaplan said that the central bank should put rates on hold as it waits to see how uncertainties about growth, weakness in interest-sensitive industries and tighter financial conditions play out. Speaking to Bloomberg’s Michael McKee, Kaplan said,

“We should not take any further action on interest rates until these issues are resolved, for better, for worse.”

The coming week will be crucial with the all-important payrolls figures for December due on Friday. Although the final report for 2018 is forecast to show that American employers added 180,000 jobs to cap a 2.45 million annual increase, the highest level since 2015, that monthly estimate is also the lowest median projection since last January and may be a sign that businesses are starting to push against wage rises or are less bullish on continued growth.

Against this backdrop, a debt tsunami, far greater than that ever experienced before in the world’s economic history looms on the horizon. Perhaps that would explain why at least some family offices are allocating some of their vast holdings to cryptocurrencies and especially Bitcoin. In a tsunami, every life jacket counts.

 


About the author:

Patrick Tan is CEO & General Counsel for Novum Global Technologies, a quantitative cryptocurrency trading and digital liquidity asset management firm. For more information on Novum Global Technologies and the Novum Group of companies, please visit: www.novumtech.co

 

Disclaimer:

The above references an opinion and is for informational purposes only. Do not take this as personalised financial or investment advice. The views expressed by the author do not necessarily represent the opinion of BitPrime.

 

Originally Published in Altcoin Magazine

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Mainnet wallet introduction – 2018

Quarter 3 & 4 of 2018 is the time to launch mainnets it seems. Many of the popular alt-coins have finished developing and testing their primary network and are in the process of swapping old protocol tokens for new mainnet tokens. With the launch of many mainnets comes the launch of many new wallets. We will cover some of the new wallets that have been released over the past few months and touch on their navigation, ease of use and different features.

 

Icon (ICX)

Icon recently switched to mainnet, which involved swapping old ERC20 tokens for new mainnet tokens. The swap started on June 20th and is open until September 26th. Holders had the opportunity to convert their tokens on various exchanges such as Binance, Upbit and Bithumb, though they have now switched to mainnet entirely and no longer offer conversion services.

With the launch of Icon’s new mainnet comes the release of their new hot wallet called ICONex. ICONex is a Chrome extension accessible only through Google Chrome (desktop). Because of this, there is no download needed. The new wallet is very easy to set up and use. Upon installation, users are asked to create a new wallet or load an existing wallet using a Keystore file or private key. Users are invited to enter a wallet name, a password, download the Keystore file, and write down the private key.

Once a wallet is created, users can send and receive Icon, add new wallets, and swap old ERC20 tokens for new mainnet tokens. I like the simplicity of the wallet and how easy it is to navigate. Some cool features include balance, which can be shown in USD, BTC or ETH, and the ability to add multiple wallets.

 

Ontology (ONT)

Ontology is another cryptocurrency that has recently made the switch to mainnet. Users have from June 30th through till October 1st to swap their old tokens for new.

With the mainnet launch comes Ontology’s release of their new mobile wallet ‘Onto.’ The wallet is available on both iOS and Android devices and can be installed via their respective app stores. To create a new wallet, users simply enter a wallet name, password (8-15 characters), and write down the mnemonic phrase. Some features of the wallet I really like are the address book, which allows the user to send coins to a saved wallet address, and mainnet token swap feature which enables users to swap out their old tokens for the new. Also, users can earn ONG tokens when they store ONT in the Onto wallet.

 

Tron (TRX)

Tron (TRX) is another cryptocurrency that has recently moved to mainnet and launched a new wallet. Unlike some of the other coins that have switched to mainnet, Tron’s new wallet is available on all devices, including iOS, Android, desktop and is available as a ‘web wallet.’ They have certainly covered all bases. The wallet is very slick and ‘cutting edge,’ it just looks modern. Users can even create multiple accounts within the wallet.

The wallet is extremely easy to set up, requiring a wallet name and password. Once inside, users can swap their Tron for a plethora of other coins, as well as freeze TRX within the wallet and enable push notifications. I am really impressed by this wallet, primarily because of the ease of navigate.

 

VeChain (VET)

VeChain, now known as VeChainThor is yet another cryptocurrency that has moved to mainnet (I told you there was a lot). Their mainnet swap started on 30th June and is scheduled to finish in early September. The VeChain team has done things a little differently as the ratio for old tokens to new is 1:100. This means each old VEN token can be swapped for a 100 mainnet tokens. Similar to the other coins I have mentioned, VeChain has released a new wallet alongside their launch to the mainnet.

The new wallet, named VeChainThor is available on iOS and Android only. To create a new wallet, users enter a wallet name, password and are required to write down and repeat the mnemonic phrase. Users are also expected to set up a six-digit passcode, which is required upon opening the application. The wallet boasts a simple interface. Some exciting features include the ‘blind balance’ button, the ability to manage wallets and contacts, and the VeChainThor node program, which gives users the chance to win VeThor Tokens (VTHO).

 

IOTA (MIOTA)

The recent addition of the IOTA Trinity wallet has been an impressive step in the right direction for the tangle-based cryptocurrency. The Trinity wallet is available on iOS and Android devices only, though the team is expected to release a desktop version shortly. Compared to previously launched wallets, the Trinity wallet is a serious improvement. Users can now generate safe and secure seeds within the app, something that caused much confusion for IOTA users in the past. Users can print the seed from their device, save it to a password manager, or just write it down. Alternatively, you can enter/scan your old wallet seed to restore your old wallet balances.

Some useful features include:

  • Ability to change currency. NZD is available
  • Change the wallet theme. This involves altering background and button colours.
  • Language settings
  • Security settings, which includes implementing 2FA and biometric authentication
  • A ‘mode’ setting, which allows users to change from standard mode to expert (wallets default to standard). Users wanting to access additional features like manual promotion and reattachment should turn expert mode on.

 

Summary

The cryptocurrency space is fascinating as we are starting to see the release of new wallets coming from different cryptocurrencies around the world. It’s great to see simplicity and ease of use are two areas of focus seen throughout all mentioned wallets. As we know, mass adoption is going to play a massive role in the success of cryptocurrency in the future and creating wallets that are easy to navigate and use is going to be a key part of that adoption.

 


Disclaimer: The above references an opinion and is for informational purposes only. Do not take this as personalised financial or investment advice. The opinions expressed by the author do not represent the opinion of BitPrime.

Last updated: 06/08/2018

NEM XEM partnership with BitPrime
Reading Time: 2 minutes

NEM Foundation Partners With BitPrime

 

NEM Partnership

Christchurch-based BitPrime has signed a partnership with the NEM Foundation. BitPrime will be working with NEM Foundation Australia and New Zealand to provide a secure and compliant platform for New Zealand residents to buy and sell the XEM cryptocurrency with ease. BitPrime is trusted by over 9,000 Kiwis and is New Zealand owned and operated, The cryptocurrency retailer boasts over 50 Cryptocurrencies in their ecosystem.

The partnership signifies a big step forward in the cryptocurrency space as Choice Payments, a startup in the Kiwibank FinTech Accelerator programme, raises NZD$1 million of the XEM Cryptocurrency just two months ago.

NEM Foundation is currently one of the most well-funded and successful blockchain technology projects in the crypto industry. It was set up to promote the NEM blockchain technology globally with its recently launched USD$40 million development fund. It officially landed in New Zealand in December 2017 and is poised to support the ecosystem through regular education events and partnerships with the blockchain and cryptocurrency ecosystem.

 

Partnership Priorities

BitPrime and NEM Foundation New Zealand will be collaborating on 3 key areas:

1. Developing a process for New Zealand residents to buy and sell the XEM cryptocurrency through the BitPrime platform, with speed, security and ease.

2. Provide liquidity of the XEM cryptocurrency to the New Zealand dollar (NZD) for technology firms who were successful in raising funds through the NEM Community Fund (like Choice payments)

3. Develop content and educational resources on blockchain and cryptocurrency technologies,  to foster greater involvement in the NEM ecosystem.

 

“Firms like BitPrime are a key part to the blockchain and cryptocurrency ecosystem. This partnership will signify a big win for both parties because of the shared commitment to help ordinary members of the public and enterprises to understand and trade cryptocurrencies” -Jason Lee, Expansion Director for Australia and New Zealand for NEM Foundation

 

Equipped with the relevant licensing by regulatory bodies, BitPrime’s clients purchase directly from BitPrime’s own reserves, rather than a third party. When an order is placed, funds are transferred directly to a wallet that is specified by the clients. BitPrime does not hold or manage funds like an exchange or broker, avoiding the significant counter-party risks that these options entail. So in the unlikely event of a hack, BitPrime’s clients are not at risk because they don’t hold any of the client’s cryptocurrency.

 

“BitPrime’s systems are designed to process the orders quickly, while our team of experts are available to give individualised service to larger orders and cater to specific customer needs, the partnership with NEM Foundation will help a spectrum of our clients, from the beginners who want to start purchasing their first cryptocurrency to technology firms who want to build on the NEM blockchain” -Ross Carter-Brown, CEO of BitPrime.

What is NEM?

NEM is the world’s first “Smart Asset” blockchain,  built with businesses in mind. NEM is a world-class platform designed to offer a streamlined method to maintain a secure ledger of transactions. NEM’s blockchain technology offers the potential to drastically simplify an enormous variety of secure ledger and transaction tracking systems. It provides an adaptable API interface that can be used with any programming language. Designed with modular customisation in mind.

As of June 2018, NEM is the 15th largest cryptocurrency in the world, with a market cap of NZD$3,2 billion, turning over NZD$20 million a day.

ENDS

ripple xrp logo
Reading Time: 2 minutes

UPDATE 08/10/20: Toast is no longer recommended to store XRP as the development team behind it are no longer servicing it – you can still use it at your own discretion but this is not advised. Please try Exodus instead.


UPDATE: Ripple, the currency, is now known as XRP. The ticker remains the same (XRP). For more on this rebrand, see our post on the new XRP logo.


What Wallets to Use with XRP?

Before we launch straight into wallets, I will briefly cover what XRP is. If you’re already familiar with XRP, skip straight to the wallet section.

 

What is XRP?

XRP is a fast and highly scalable digital asset, which enables payments anywhere in the world in real-time. XRP was built for enterprise use and gives banks and payment clearing providers on-demand and reliable options to source liquidity for global payments. XRP payments are extremely fast and settle in just 4 seconds. The network consistently handles 1,000 transactions per second and can be scaled to handle 50,000 tx/sec; twice that of Visa.

XRP wallets are hard to come by but we have selected our favourite software and hardware options below:

 

Toast Wallet

Toast Wallet is a simple, easy to use wallet for iOS, Android, Mac OS, Windows, Linux, and Chrome Browser extension. To activate your wallet on the Ripple network, you will need to send 20 XRP to it. In other words, your first deposit into the wallet will need to be over 20 XRP. If you want to send all your XRP to another wallet the total will send minus the 20 XRP. Another great thing about Toast Wallet is that it was developed by New Zealand based StarStone Ltd. Toast Wallet is no longer actively maintained by the developers meaning there is NO support or security updates however you can continue to use it at your own discretion.

 

Ledger Nano S & X

Ledger provides one of the only hardware wallets compatible with XRP. It is simply a USB device that holds your private keys, adding an additional layer of security and convenience. It is compatible with a wide range of other coins. If interested, you can order directly from the manufacturer here for $129-230, depending on the model. Inside the box, you will get the USB device, a USB cable, instructions, and a recovery card where you will write down your recovery seed (extremely important).

 

Need Help?

If you have any questions about XRP or wallets, please feel free to get in touch. We offer free email/chat support in case you get stuck from 9 am – 10 pm, 7 days. You can find all our contact details here.

 

Buy XRP Now

If you’re ready to buy XRP, please ensure that you’ve verified your ID before you place an order. Then you can place your order here.

 

Last updated: 01/03/2022

 

Reading Time: 2 minutes

How To Sell Bitcoin in New Zealand?

So, you want to sell some bitcoin in New Zealand? You have been holding Bitcoin for a while and you want to cash in some or all of your profits? You have come to the right place to sell bitcoin! BitPrime buys bitcoin and other currencies both locally and internationally, and we aim to form long-term relationships with all of our customers. We can guarantee certain prices and volumes, pegged to a reference index. If you would like to get a quote for a particular volume of BTC please contact us directly via email or live chat.

 

Here are the steps to follow if you want to sell Bitcoin in New Zealand:

 

Sell Bitcoin in New Zealand

1. Verify your identity

If you have already verified with us previously you can skip this step, if not, please read this first step carefully.

As a professional financial services provider, we take security and fraud prevention very seriously. All new customers need to verify their ID before we can process any orders for you. This includes both the buying and selling of cryptocurrencies. This is to meet our obligations under the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009. Much the same as a consumer bank, we are required to hold personal information about our customers.

To get started with this process you can apply to verify with BitPrime here.

 

VERIFY NOW!

 

2. Send us your sell quote

We want to make it easy for you to sell your bitcoin for NZD. Simply fill out our sell order form with the amount and type of cryptocurrency you wish to sell, along with your personal details. We process these requests periodically throughout the day and will email you a formal quote with instructions included. You can then choose whether to accept this quote or not.

 

3. Send us your bitcoin

Once you have accepted, you will need to transfer your coins to the wallet address that we provide you. If this is your first time please get in touch if you get stuck anywhere.

Once you have sent the coins, please email us the transaction ID/hash. Copy and paste this so as to avoid any errors and to allow us to confirm the transaction on the blockchain. The transaction ID is generally a long string of letters and numbers. If you are uncertain where to find this ID, make sure you let us know so we can help you.

Please remember, you will need to account for any transaction fees and gas fees applicable to your wallet when sending your coins.

 

4. Receive Your Money

When we have confirmed the coins are in our wallet we will send you your NZD. We aim to process all orders fully within 24 business hours of receiving the coins.

 

VERIFY NOW!

 

 

Article last updated: 26/08/18

Ethereum 2.0 Serenity Upgrade is coming
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Ethereum and Ripple have arrived at BitPrime

As of 9am Monday 12th June, 2017 Ethereum (ETH) and Ripple (XRP) will be available for purchase directly with New Zealand Dollars, on BitPrime. This decision has been driven mainly by requests from you, our valued customers. You spoke, so we listened. This is the first time that cryptocurrencies other than Bitcoin have been available in NZ. You can place your order for Ether here, and Ripple here. Please bare with us over the coming days as we expect the demand. contact us if we are unable to process your order, and we will contact you as soon as it becomes available again. We expect to be sourcing a majority of ETH and XRP internationally but if you would like to sell to us, get in touch for a prompt quote.

New Website Coming Soon….

Due to the high-level of demand for these coins we brought forward our planned launch date by approximately 4 weeks. We had planned to launch ETH and XRP as part of our new website that is currently under development. But you couldn’t wait! Our new site will have a much cleaner and more automated buy/sell process. so watch this space. We would appreciate your input on the design of our new so let us know if you have any requests.

Changes to Bitcoin orders

As part of the recent changes we have made the decision to move all Bitcoin order processing in-house, away from our escrow partner LocalBitcoins. We will still have a presence on LocalBitcoins and you will still be able to buy and sell Bitcoin via LBC. Just let us know if that’s your preference.

Existing Customers

A note to all of our existing customers. You will now need to create a  new username and password on BitPrime even if you have traded with us in the past. Once you’ve done this, please email hello@bitprime.co.nz with your name and mobile number so we can attach your “verified” status to your new account. There is no need to verify for a second time.
Last updated: 12/06/2017

Bitcoin Wallet
Reading Time: 7 minutes

The Top 10 Bitcoin Wallets for 2017

Bitcoin has grown massively in popularity in New Zealand in the last 12 months. When you start using Bitcoin, the initial step is to select a secure wallet. Basically, your wallet is your default place to send, receive, and store Bitcoins. There are various kinds of Bitcoin wallets out there to choose from, so here are some key features to consider when selecting which one is best suited to your requirements.


Looking for our 2018 recommendations? Check out our updated post: Top 10 Bitcoin Wallets for 2018.


What Features to Consider

The Reputation of the Wallet

Who developed the app? How private are the servers where the information is stored? It may take some time to establish a reputation so It’s worthwhile to stay up to date on the newest wallets that get released. However, when it comes to your money, you should only do business with reputable organisations.

Security/Open Source

Open source wallets permit other programmers to assess the code and validate the security foundation of the wallet. This can be especially helpful for new wallet owners, as it provides them with a strong base to establish a reputation. Opt for wallets that store private keys offline instead of on servers if security is important to you.

Privacy

The Bitcoin network is pseudonymous. Anyone can view the transaction history associated with a Bitcoin wallet, which is part of what makes the block chain so robust… If you’re worried about privacy, use a different deposit address for each transaction or for further anonymity tumble your bitcoins and opt for a wallet that supports the TOR network.

MultiSig Account

This new feature allows several private keys to be set up on one Bitcoin wallet. Users can establish a shared wallet that requires private keys from multiple people for a transaction to be confirmed. This provides an additional layer of security for family and corporate sharing accounts.

Backup Features

The wallet must offer a strong backup feature that ensures that you don’t lose access to your Bitcoin account, even if it is stolen or damaged. When backing up your wallet make sure you back-up all your private keys. If you’re storing your back-up online make sure you encrypt it so that it can’t be used if someone steals them. It’s also important to store your back-ups in more than one location incase something happens to that external hard drive or flash drive.

Platform Availability

With so many devices used these days, make sure that the wallet you choose can be used on your platform of choice. If availability is more important to you than security, opt for a web-based Bitcoin wallet and ensure that it can be used with the hardware wallet you have your eye on.

Now that you know what features to seek out in a Bitcoin wallet, let’s assess the Top 10 Wallets of 2017.

1. Copay

Copay is the single biggest Bitcoin wallet that can be accessed through multiple platforms including Windows, Android, iOS, macOS, Linux and so on. Copay was developed by BitPay, a reputed Bitcoin payment service that prides itself on its secure infrastructure. As a MultiSig wallet, Copay allows you to establish a shared wallet that requires private keys from several people for a transaction to be confirmed. Because it is open source, any programmer can audit the code and validate its security options. The private key remains stored on the client side, which enhances security further. It also permits you to establish a 12-word mnemonic, which you are encouraged to record for a Copay wallet backup.

2. Mycelium

As the self-proclaimed “Default Bitcoin wallet”, Mycelium is one of the longest running and most widely used platforms. Mycelium is a semi-open source platform, its coding can be reviewed by anyone, but you can’t change or redistribute it for security purposes. Encrypted data is sent over a highly-secured network. For added privacy, it also permits you to backup your wallet, connect to the TOR network, and even protect your mobile wallet with a PIN. You can download the Mycelium wallet on iOS and Android but It does not currently have a desktop platform. As of now, it doesn’t support MultiSig accounts but that may change in the near future.

3. Armory

Armory is renowned as one of the most secure and reputable Bitcoin wallets currently available. It comes equipped with numerous features. Armory is open source, comes with MultiSig support and transactions can be made with the TOR network. Additionally, it provides impenetrable backup and encryption tools. Armory uses secure private key storage on an offline computer. Having the private key on a cold storage wallet prevents hackers from stealing or accessing them. Armory is best suited for advanced users. Beginners might find it overwhelming at first. It is a desktop client that can be used on macOS, Windows, Raspberry Pi, and Ubuntu. If you’re willing to set up one of these platforms, this Bitcoin wallet would be worth downloading.

4. AirBitz

AirBitz is a highly secure Bitcoin wallet client intended for mobile platforms. As an open source system, AirBitz has all the basic features you expect in a Bitcoin wallet, including client-side encryption and backups.  It also has a directory of merchants who accept Bitcoin as a form of payment. These additions enhance what was already a phenomenal wallet. However, it does come with some negatives. To begin with, the TOR network is not supported. Secondly, it currently doesn’t come with MultiSig support. The programmers are said to be working on this, but no release date has been announced. Ultimately, AirBitz is easy to use and packed full of features. It can be used on iOS and Android-powered devices.

5. Breadwallet

As an individual client, Breadwallet connects you right to the Bitcoin network. Your Bitcoins are secure since there are no extra servers (which are susceptible to hacks). Because Breadwallet is open source, anyone can assess the code and confirm your wallet’s security model. It also offers a handy method to have your wallet backed up in the event of theft or damage. Without MultiSig however, you’ll be unable to share an account with others. Further, connections via the TOR network aren’t supported by Breadwallet. If these features aren’t important to you and you’re in search of a basic wallet, Breadwallet might be just what you need. Breadwallet is available on Android and iOS-based platforms.

6. MultiBit

Created by KeepKey, MultiBit is a wallet that also uses a USB device to sign all transactions for additional security. It is a desktop client that connects right to the Bitcoin network. As an open source client, MultiBit will let you backup your wallets and restore your private keys with a passphrase. It allows you to establish and use TOR as a proxy to stop hackers from connecting your IP address with your payments. MultiBit doesn’t come with MultiSig support, although, if you’re in search of a lightweight platform, something simple to set up and easy to use, and MultiSig isn’t important to you, then MultiBit might be right up your alley.

7. Electrum

Electrum is decentralised lightweight wallet and is very fast for a Bitcoin wallet. It takes up the bare minimum of resources on computers, making it ideal for those with older computers. Electrum may be less reliant on hardware resources, but that certainly doesn’t inhibit the features it comes with. As an open source wallet, Electrum comes with MultiSig support, hardware wallet integration, and use of the TOR network, which will aid you in remaining anonymous. Like Armory, Electrum lets you store private keys offline to secure them from hackers. With a variety of features, there are so many things to like about Electrum. It can be used on MacOS, Windows, Android, and Linux. There is currently no Apple mobile platform Electrum can be used on, but if this doesn’t affect you, you’re encouraged to download Electrum.

8. Blockchain.info

Although Blockchain.info offers a Bitcoin wallet, they are more well known for their Blockchain explorer service. This Bitcoin wallet is suitable for you if convenience and accessibility is what you’re looking for. For extra anonymity, simply connect to the TOR network. Aside from these features, there’s nothing else special about this Bitcoin wallet. Private servers are where your keys are stored, and you’re expected to trust them. Further, it won’t connect right to the Bitcoin network and in the event of the Blockchain servers going offline, you’ll have no accessibility to your Bitcoins. It is recommended that you use online wallets strictly for storing small expenditures. If you do opt to use Blockchain.info, you can use their mobile and desktop apps, which can be downloaded on macOS, iOS, Android, and Windows platforms.

9. Ledger Wallet

Ledger is a France-based startup that creates hardware wallets for cryptocurrencies. It has developed numerous wallets like the Nano S, Ledger Nano, and Ledger Blue. Using a USB connection, your computer connects to the wallet and confirms transactions when paired with a software wallet. As a hardware wallet, Ledger provides you with total regulation over your Bitcoins. It is your responsibility to back-up and manage your private keys. This removes the requirement of trusting third-party websites with your Bitcoins. Further, as a specific piece of hardware stores your keys, they are protected from internet-based threats and malware. Priced at NZD$129-229, the Ledger Nano is a small hardware wallet. For NZD$386, you can use the Ledger Blue, which allows you to navigate through your transactions effortlessly with a touch screen and is the most advanced hardware wallet on the market. They also offer worldwide shipping. Both are great options to keep your Bitcoin secure and well worth the price.

10. Trezor

As a hardware wallet pioneer, Trezor was developed by the European start-up, SatoshiLabs. Using a USB connection, the Trezor hooks up to your computer and comes with an OLED display. The Trezor wallet offers several security features, including total control of all your Bitcoins and security to protect you from malicious programs. Because your Bitcoins are kept offline, attackers can’t access them. The Trezor wallet connects to several other software wallets. When you want to send Bitcoins from any of them, simply validate the message shown on Trezor’s OLED display. It doesn’t get any easier than that. Priced at NZD$141, Trezor comes in a number of different colours.

11. Samourai

Ok so we said it was going to be the top 10 wallets but we couldn’t resist adding this new kid on the block that is still in alpha testing. Samourai has a range of features including military grade AES-256 encryption on your device, no address reuse for privacy, Tor and VPN support, to name a few. Samourai also uses ‘smart’ miners fees, allowing you to select the network fees you want to pay. When the Bitcoin network is running slow you can select ‘priority’ fees for faster transaction confirmation. The feature that really sets this wallet apart is Ricochet which is a premium transaction type that helps improve fungibility and frustrate blockchain spies. This wallet is well worth trying out and has huge potential, but keep in mind that it’s still in alpha 3 testing so their are bugs to be ironed out. We only recommend this wallet for advanced users at this time for that reason.  Samourai is currently only available on Android but more platforms are planned in future.

The Bottom Line

Bitcoin is here to stay in New Zealand. As you’ve learned from this article, there are several kinds of Bitcoin wallets, which include web-based wallets, hardware wallets and software wallets. Security should be your highest priority when choosing or setting up a wallet as you essentially become your own bank. These are without question, the most practical Bitcoin wallets out there. This list should provide you with the most comprehensive information of what to seek out in a Bitcoin wallet. Let us know what wallet you use to store your Bitcoins in the comments below.

Last updated 25/04/2017

Please note: we are Affiliates of Ledger and Trezor, the two hardware wallet manufacturers we recommend.

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Bitcoin Vs Fiat Currencies

There has always been a lot of contradictory information about the instability of fiat currencies, and the emergence of virtual currencies like Bitcoin has only intensified such inquiries.

What is Fiat money?

Fiat money refers to any currency declared by the government as legal tender but has no intrinsic value as a commodity. The word fiat originates from Latin and means “it will become”.
Before the introduction of paper money or currency, all money was in metal coins, initially valued relative to gold. Paper notes were introduced to combat the growing challenges of hauling bags of metal around for transactions. In the beginning, these currencies were as good as gold. That means, governments printed only as many paper notes as they had enough gold to back up. Furthermore, everyone who held paper could go to a bank or financial institution and convert their currency into physical gold. Eventually, governments realised the limits that gold backing was having on currencies. They then put a stop to the redeeming of gold certificates or paper money for gold. They began to print more notes giving birth to fiat currency.
Fiat currency has simplified day to day business transactions and given governments better control of their economic activity. However, by centralising the system, the currency also has several drawbacks. The Voltaire famously wrote: “Paper money eventually returns to its intrinsic value—zero.” Fiat currencies issued by governments or central banks merely represent vague, subjective concepts of value. It means that fiat currencies have a natural tendency to decline in their purchasing power as time passes and other cryptocurrencies produced. As this happens, the people gradually turn to other currencies or alternative forms of exchange. Due to this search for alternative ways, the rise of Bitcoin occurred.

Advantages of Bitcoin

Bitcoin is a digitally mined virtual currency that can be converted into its equivalent in any physical currency. The amount of Bitcoin released into circulation is controlled by a vast, decentralised network of active users. As such, it is not directly subject to the rules of national government or central banking authorities.
Bitcoin has become a very popular alternative to fiat currency (Euros, Pounds, etc.). At the time of publishing Bitcoin has a market capitalization of NZD$25,324,344,710 and is by far the most popular cryptocurrency. A few of the advantages of using Bitcoin over Fiat currency highlighted below:

1. Bitcoin is a Decentralized Currency

It means a central body does not regulate it. Unlike in the case of Fiat currency where the government and central banks make the rules concerning the use and modulate the currency’s supply and value. It also implies that Bitcoins have no single point of failure, making the network far more secure.

2. Finite Supply of Bitcoin Units

The highly complex algorithms of Bitcoin’s source code place a strict limit on the number of Bitcoin units that can ever exist (21 million) while preventing unauthorized duplication or creation of Bitcoin units. This enforced scarcity is a vital distinction between Bitcoin and traditional fiat currencies.

3. Lower Transaction Fees

Buying, selling, and sending bitcoin is usually inexpensive. Bitcoin transaction fees are relatively small in comparison to other digital payment methods, such as credit cards, international money transfers, and PayPal. While such fees may vary per transaction, it’s very rare for a Bitcoin transaction to cost more than 1% of its value, while others charge between to 2% to 3%.

4. Easy to Use

Bitcoin addresses cost nothing to setup and can be done easily and quickly when compared to the hassle of filling out application forms for accounts and credit cards, or waiting days for international money transfers.

5. Bitcoin is Free to Hold and Transfer

Since Bitcoin is an open source code and not an organization offering service in exchange for payment like other financial institutions do. It does not charge account holders for holding and transferring bitcoin units, asides the from miner’s fees which are optional.

6. Durable

Bitcoin units can neither be destroyed nor damaged. While other currencies like paper notes, or physical exchange commodities like gold, may be manipulated, damaged, or counterfeited, Bitcoin units have no such demerits since it is a virtual currency.

7. Freedom to Transact

Bitcoin offers a lot more freedom to transact compared to transacting with fiat currencies because it does not have a controlling intermediary. Intermediaries in transactions with traditional currencies, such as PayPal, a credit card company, or banks and the government, are known to freeze or seize funds of account holders for any reason they deem fit. They could also prohibit transactions if they please. In 2015 Paypal staring refusing to process payments for Mega, a cloud storage service, after receiving significant pressure from the US government via Visa and Mastercard.

8. Increased Security and Reduced Fraud

Transactions via Bitcoin don’t allow a receiver to see any information that may expose the sender to fraud such as personal detail theft.

9. Portable

Bitcoin units are virtual and electronically stored online or in a portable credit card sized device. It can be conveniently carried around. It makes it possible to carry large sums of Bitcoin units without exposing the carrier to security risks.

10. Online Shopping

The list of merchants currently accepting Bitcoin is steadily increasing. Account holders can now book flights, pay for gaming, and much more. When buying with Bitcoin, you do not have to worry about additional surcharges or foreign exchange fees either.

What’s Next?

While Bitcoin currency may still have a long way to go before it is on par with on-demand fiat currencies like the US dollar. There are many advantages of Bitcoin over fiat currencies make it an excellent long-term investment.
With BitPrime you can buy bitcoin quickly and safely, usually within minutes.  If you would like to sell bitcoin, we can have cash in your account in as fast as 5 minutes or an hour at the longest.

 

Want to know which wallet to use?

Check out our Top 10 Bitcoin Wallets 2018 guide!

Last updated 19/03/2018

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