The second largest independent ATM deployer in Australia Stargroup has signed a joint venture agreement with blockchain payment solutions company Digitalx to convert their existing ATMs into Bitcoin ATMs (BTMs). The agreement is for Stargroup’s entire global network, starting with Australia, where it has deployed over 500 ATMs and manages 2,400 more via its subsidiary Starlink.
Digitalx & Stargroup
Digitalx Limited has signed a joint venture agreement with Perth-based Stargroup Limited. The two companies will “jointly offer and tailor a ‘two-way ATM’ solution for buying and selling bitcoin,” they announced on Monday.
Under the agreement, Stargroup will develop software for their ATMs that allows users to buy and sell bitcoin. Digitalx will develop an API to facilitate bitcoin transactions using this software. The two companies will share in the transaction fees charged at the ATMs.
“Stargroup is pleased to partner with Digitalx on this project and leverage its unique ownership of its ATM manufacturer to develop a two-way ATM where a bitcoin owner can not only buy bitcoin but more importantly can cash their bitcoin out,” CEO Todd Zani commented, adding that:
This development may also be able to be applied to other cryptocurrencies and be distributed internationally.
In May, Stargroup reported that it had become the number two independent ATM deployer in Australia, second only to DC Payments limited. The third largest is Next Payments, followed by Cash Connect, Bendigo Bank, and Suncorp.
Stargroup ATM Network
Stargroup is the only ASX-listed company deploying ATM machines in Australia, according to the company’s website. The announcement detailed:
The joint venture agreement is for the entire global network of Stargroup ATMs, with the initial roadmap to focus on Australia…Within Australia, Stargroup has deployed approximately 500 ATMs in Star Payments and manages approximately 2,400 ATMs via Starlink.
Starlink is the company’s wholly-owned subsidiary. Stargroup also has a direct ownership interest in Neo ICP Korea Inc, a Korean ATM manufacturer. “Neo ICP Korea has approximately 16,000 ATMs and back office machines in South Korea, bringing the total number of ATMs managed approaching 19,000,” according to the announcement.
Currently, there are fewer than 20 ATMs in Australia that can facilitate bitcoin transactions, the group described, adding that their fees range from 4% to 8% of the transaction value. Additionally, most of them are one-way ATMs, so users can only buy bitcoin but cannot cash them out. Coinatmradar, a website that tracks the locations of bitcoin ATMs, lists only 16 BTMs in Australia.
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