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AXA To Offer Its Customers Pay With Bitcoin

AXA, Europe’s second-largest insurance firm, has planned to offer its customers the option to pay their bills with Bitcoin (BTC) through a collaboration with the established cryptocurrency broker Bitcoin Suisse.

It has been reported that Bitcoin payments will be accepted for nearly all AXA products, except for life insurance due to regulatory barriers to AXA.

However, AXA has cited the accelerated digital transformation of the global economy during the coronavirus pandemic as being a key factor in its choice to integrate cryptocurrency into its everyday operations.

Even back in 2019, the insurer notes that it had conducted market research showing that roughly a third of respondents aged between 18 and 55 already owned or were interested in crypto. 

Claudia Bienentreu, the head of open innovation at AXA Switzerland, said that the acceptance of Bitcoin payments is “AXA’s response to growing demand from its customers for alternative payment solutions, with new technologies playing an ever greater role.”

The report said that the setup on the customer front will be a simple online transfer with a reference number. The amount owed in Swiss francs will be calculated into an equivalent sum in Bitcoin, and the indicated exchange rate will remain valid for a specified time.

The largest insurance company in Switzerland now accepts Bitcoin! AXA says that acceptance of BTC represents an investment in the company's digital future. — Cointelegraph (@Cointelegraph) April 15, 2021

During this time, customers will not bear any exchange rate risk, and AXA is not charging any additional fees for customers who choose to pay their bills in Bitcoin rather than fiat currency. AXA itself will not be holding any Bitcoin it receives on its balance sheets. Instead, Bitcoin will go into the hands of crypto broker Bitcoin Suisse.

While AXA itself is not adding any fees for Bitcoin payments, Bitcoin Suisse does incorporate its own commission of 1.75% when it calculates Bitcoin/Swiss franc exchange rates for AXA customers. AXA’s prior engagement with blockchain-based technologies includes its membership of the car dossier platform since 2017, which uses blockchain to track and record the life cycle of vehicles.

Thus, the insurer also sponsors the University of Basel’s Blockchain Challenge, where it backs research into the use of smart contracts in the insurance industry.

Source: Cointelegraph | Image: Wikipedia



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