Pundi X POSitions Itself For Middle East Expansion
Will crypto payments change the point-of-sale game forever?
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The team at Pundi X could never be accused of lacking ambition. Since launching their tokens through a $35 million ICO in early January 2018, the Indonesian startup has not only created the NPXS token, but also developed a prototype blockchain phone, the XPhone, and manufactured and distributed its POS devices to retailers, with a growing presence particularly in Latin America.
Now, with the latest thumbs-up from Arab regulators, the project is preparing to introduce its point-of-sale solutions to Northern Africa and the Middle East.
Pundi X Gets Greenlit in MENA
On April 29 the startup received the Telecom Equipment Registration Certificate from the UAE, enabling them to deploy their POS devices across the Middle East and North Africa region. Their efforts will initially focus on the Emirates, and specifically Dubai. The company also has a presence in South Africa.
The significance of the approval is enormous. In the words of Pundi X co-founder and CEO Zac Cheah:
Pundi X’s point-of-sale device, the XPOS, allows merchants to accept, buy, and sell cryptocurrencies on location. The device is, as the company says, “cryptocurrency-neutral,” allowing transactions in the native token as well as bitcoin, ether, and BNB.
Also integrated into the POS system is the XPass card, which offers pay-by-tap functionality, and the XWallet, the card’s mobile app equivalent.
The Pundi Approach to Crypto Adoption
Pundi X has smoothed over three key friction points for cryptocurrency adoption. First, its POS and XWallet infrastructure are proudly agnostic. Today the project announced the release of the Pundi X Open Platform, allowing more crypto assets to operate on the Pundi X infrastructure.
They have also opened their doors, allowing partner projects to customize XPASS cards and integrate their native tokens with Pundi X infrastructure. In that arrangement, what Pundi X loses in brand recognition, it makes up for in breadth of deployment.
The latest deal with Ebooc Fintech & Loyalty Labs in Dubai is the first such arrangement. As the CEO highlighted:
Creating POS Devices Critical to Pundi X’s Success
Pundi X has also manufactured physical POS devices, allowing the company to deploy cryptocurrency into the retail payment sphere without having to negotiate with Visa, Mastercard, and other gatekeepers.
A critical feature of the Pundi X POS device is that it allows users – both retailers and shoppers – to buy and sell cryptocurrencies, in addition to spending them. Making the purchase of crypto as seamless as walking into a store and tapping a payment terminal is a far cry from the limited availability on exchanges, which mainstream society still finds daunting (and risky).
Providing all the liquidity behind the system is the NPXS tokens, which prospective projects will need to purchase in order to be deployed on the XPOS. Pundi X provides the infrastructure for virtually instant transactions, with the company accepting the risk of currency swings between off-chain transactions and exchanges.
A fuller explanation of the XPOS was outlined by Cheah at the Dubai International Blockchain Summit in Jan 2018.
Adoption’s The Name Of The Game
Buying crypto “in a convenience store,” as Cheah describes it, is very much at the heart of Pundi X’s vision, which clearly intends to increase adoption by making virtual currencies easier to buy and spend.
Without decoupling from legacy payment systems, blockchain becomes practically pointless as a payment mechanism. Pundi X seems determined to wrest the retail experience from the hands of traditional banking and payment network providers.