• Within reach

    Within reach

    East Africa’s first digital currency ATM has been installed in Nairobi, making it possible to buy bitcoins and litecoins instantly for cash. Kenya joins South Africa, Djibouti and Zimbabwe as among the first African nations to have done so.

    As reported by Asoko Insight, Nairobi-based fintech company BitClub launched the ATM close to the CBD.  Serving 15 to 20 people per day, the ATM enables traders to buy the cryptocurrency – without the risks associated with online trading – for as little as $5, with the option to pay for them in US dollars or Kenyan shillings. To buy the digital currency, the trader must start by setting up an account with a trusted trading platform. They will then receive a digital wallet in which to store their digital currency.

    ‘The transaction is simple, taking less than two minutes. You get as many bitcoins as the value of your cash,’ says Wangechi Kariuki, entrepreneur at BitClub.

    According to a recent Citibank survey, Kenya ranked among the countries with the largest bitcoin holdings, valued at US$1.63 billion (approximately 2.3% of the GDP). This is the result of a growing number of Kenyans turning to cryptocurrencies as an investment avenue.

    26 June 2018
    Image: Gallo/Getty Images