While Bitcoin and associated cryptocurrencies are experiencing something of a bounce off of the 2018 lows, one of South Africa’s oldest cryptocurrency exchanges have launched a unique proposition: physical, one-to-one backed gold and silver trading. While the company is still immensely excited about the opportunities of cryptocurrency as the future of finance, they believe that gold and silver provide a similar premise: inflation protection.
“For almost two centuries, many South Africans have invested in gold and silver as ways to protect their savings,” says AltCoinTrader CEO Richard de Sousa, “and we believe we have come up with an effective means to bring this mindset into the digital age, making metal-backed investments accessible for all South Africans.”
The company has entered into an agreement with a number of retail commodity merchants around the country to back each unit of gold and silver traded on their platform. This means that if a user wants to withdraw their purchased gold or silver, they can do so by creating a withdrawal request, and either have their assets delivered to them by secure courier, or collect it from a nearby retail partner. This also means that, unlike other reportedly gold backed cryptocurrencies, users are actually buying and selling real commodities.
All gold and silver traded on AltCoinTrader will be represented by a one ounce coin, with gold specifically represented by Krugerrands where possible. While any denomination can be traded on the exchange, only denominations of ounce units will be able to be withdrawn physically.
AltCoinTrader have said that they will only be accepting physical deposits of gold or silver at their retail partners should their physical supply run low. The exchange have also emphasised that no physical assets are kept at their offices, and are instead held at third party vaults and retail partners.
Bitcoin was released in January 2009 off the back of the financial crisis after years of development and research by an anonymous team of cryptographers, and its premise was to provide a deflationary digital asset, much like a digital version of gold. With this premise of a limited supply asset, a number of reportedly gold-backed cryptocurrencies have found moderate success in the industry worldwide, but many have battled to either find traction, or prove their physical reserves. All the while a number of opportunistic pyramid schemes have capitalised on the narrative.
“For us, it just makes sense,” continues de Sousa, “People who love the idea of Bitcoin naturally understand physical assets like gold and silver, and so we wanted to provide the public a place to not only buy and sell cryptocurrency, but deflationary assets like gold and silver too. All from the comfort of their own home.”
The cryptocurrency industry has received somewhat of a shake up this year, with a number of new entrants to the market further increasing awareness of the industry, but AltCoinTrader have kept their heads down to build what they are passionate about: A digital exchange that gives users an opportunity to invest in the future of finance.
Trading Launches on Monday 5 August, 2019
The company has announced that trading of gold and silver will be launched on Monday 5 August 2019, but users can deposit South African Rands before then in anticipation for the launch date, or to trade in the 20 cryptocurrencies available on their platform.
AltCoinTrader have been a leading cryptocurrency exchange in South Africa since 2015, being the first platform to offer the purchase of cryptocurrencies outside of just Bitcoin. Today they have 20 cryptocurrencies available to be purchased or speculated on, with a daily trading volume of R10 million. This new addition to their platform will surely increase that volume, and certainly add interest to the site.