In a groundbreaking initiative, US-based stablecoin issuer, Circle, has forged a partnership with Taiwan’s second-largest convenience store chain, FamilyMart, and local cryptocurrency exchange, BitoGroup. This trio has rolled out a “Points-to-Crypto” service on the FamilyMart app, a platform where customers can exchange their loyalty points for the Circle-issued USD Coin (USDC).
The primary aim of this venture is to prevent the depreciation of loyalty points’ value over time, offering a zero-transaction-fee channel to the cryptocurrency world. The converted points, now in USDC, can be withdrawn to users’ BitoPro wallets, making cryptocurrency access more democratic and straightforward.
The significance of loyalty points is quite pronounced in Taiwan. A 2021 study by the Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC) revealed that a staggering 87% of Taiwanese users participate in points accumulation programs, and an overwhelming 99% utilize these points for product redemptions. This initiative, therefore, holds the promise of seamlessly merging traditional retail practices with the emerging cryptocurrency domain.
With FamilyMart’s loyalty program, known as FamiPoints, boasting over 17 million members nationwide, and BitoGroup having a robust user base of around 800,000, the potential for fostering cryptocurrency adoption is significant. This venture could serve as a blueprint for other retail-crypto collaborations, nurturing a symbiotic relationship between these two sectors.
Furthermore, this innovative program aligns well with the evolving regulatory landscape in Taiwan. The country is on the verge of introducing new legislation concerning cryptocurrencies by the end of November 2023, laying down a solid foundation for such forward-thinking initiatives. This collaborative effort not only paves the way for increased crypto engagement among the masses but also sets a precedent for similar future endeavors in the region and beyond.
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