The CEO of online marketplace eBay, Jamie Iannone, has been toying with the idea of adding cryptocurrency payment options to the ecommerce site for a while. But the firm stopped short of announcing any moves at its 2022 Investor Day Thursday.
Iannone instead reiterated that the company is exploring “new forms of payment to add.” The ecommerce platform did, however, present a slide of its digital wallet, due in Q2.
Digital wallets are software programs that hold payment information. Some, such as Apple Pay and Google Pay, are predominantly meant for credit and debit cards. Instead of pulling out a (physical) wallet, you can pay by tapping your phone at the point of sale.
But digital wallets can also store private keys that would enable people to pay in BTC or other cryptocurrencies. And recently, many prominent crypto wallets have expanded their functionality to more easily let people view and trade their NFTs—unique tokens that act as digital deeds of ownership to other assets.
Where does eBay stand? Well, since last year you can already buy and sell NFTs on eBay, long a top destination for connoisseurs of physical collectibles. And Iannone has made clear his intent to go after younger customers in other ways—moving beyond grandparents selling Hummel figurines out of their basement to sneaker aficionados and similarly trending consumer groups.
Iannone told TheStreet in February that the marketplace’s addition of Google Pay and Apple Pay—along with installment-plan platforms—means that it’s ready and able to “open up new forms of payment.”