Regardless of the crypto prices over the last 48 hours, some very important news has come out: Bakkt has found two partners to help with adoption, Starbucks and Microsoft. Starbucks will acquire a large portion of Bakkt’s equity in exchange for becoming Bakkt’s first merchant. While Microsoft’s cloud services will be utilized to buy, sell, store and spend users cryptocurrency.
This is huge news because Starbucks and Microsoft are some of the most popular companies in their respective sectors. At first, only those in America will be able to buy goods at Starbucks with Bitcoin, but over time the remaining countries where Starbucks operates in will follow. The use of Bitcoin to buy coffee seems to be very close to becoming a reality, even without the lightning network.
When customers purchase goods from Starbucks, the company will not be receiving Bitcoin, unfortunately, because the cryptocurrency will be exchanged for fiat before the transfer. Regardless, this still allows users to utilize their cryptocurrency as currency instead of just a speculative asset.
“As the flagship retailer, Starbucks will play a pivotal role in developing practical, trusted and regulated applications for consumers to convert their digital assets into US dollars for use at Starbucks. As a leader in Mobile Pay to our more than 15 million Starbucks Rewards members, Starbucks is committed to innovation for expanding payment options for our customers.” -Maria Smith, Starbucks Vice President of Partnerships and Payments
Phase two of Bakkt includes another partnership with Microsoft. Microsoft’s cloud solutions will be utilized in order to allow users to buy, sell, store, and spend their cryptocurrencies on their global network.
In the last month, Jeff Sprecher, CEO of Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), has stated that Bakkt will be launching in 2019. We are all still waiting on the CFTC to approve Bakkt but hopefully, it comes sooner rather than later. Regardless, there is a lot happening around Bakkt that is promising for the cryptocurrency space.