Coindirect, a recently-launched cryptocurrency exchange, has started offering services in South Africa.
The exchange allows buyers to purchase cryptocurrency directly from sellers, and the marketplace supports the trading of over 30 cryptocurrencies.
It also includes an online wallet service for users.
To see what sets Coindirect apart, MyBroadband spoke to Coindirect marketing manager Nicole Watson about how the platform works.
Coindirect is a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency marketplace which allows buyers to purchase currencies directly from sellers, using local payment channels in their own currency.
Buyers can view offers from multiple sellers and choose which offer to accept.
An order is created once an offer is accepted and it is completed once the buyer has paid the seller.
Coindirect then releases the purchased cryptocurrency to the buyer’s online wallet.
“Typically, if one wants to buy an altcoin in South Africa, it can be a time-consuming, cumbersome process whereby one would have to utilise a number of exchanges and platforms in order to make a simple purchase,” said Watson.
“However, Coindirect is the only platform that allows one to buy, sell, and also convert over 30 altcoins instantly, direct with local currency.”
Customer wallets function similarly to those on exchanges like Luno, and Coindirect does not provide users with their private key.
Coindirect is registered with the Isle of Man FSA and complies with all local FIC regulations for South Africa, it said.
Coindirect added that its instant-verified bank transfers and AI-driven fraud prevention engine gives it an advantage over traditional marketplaces.
“The main advantage of a peer-to-peer exchange is that the price of the cryptocurrency in local currency is set at the point of sale, much like an ecommerce purchase, which is an advantage for a buyer in terms of ease of use and convenience,” said Watson.
“Coindirect is also able to offer its service globally, without any restrictions in terms of bank account opening.”
The marketplace buying and selling fees are included in the prices on the platform and no extra fees are charged above the amounts listed.
Coindirect currently supports the trading of over 30 cryptocurrencies, and plans to launch more in 2018.
A unique feature of Coindirect is that when a user purchases a cryptocurrency other than Bitcoin, buyers can still purchase from Bitcoin sellers and Coindirect automatically converts the Bitcoin purchased into the “altcoin” chosen by the user.
Watson said the price of an altcoin traded on Coindirect is calculated using the exchange rate between it and Bitcoin.
“Coindirect bases the value of the altcoins it has available for sale on the Bitcoin price and the exchange rate to the altcoin is calculated using this exchange rate when the sale is complete,” she said.
The platform supports the trade and holding of numerous cryptocurrencies, but it only allows Bitcoin deposits from other exchange wallets.
Watson said the majority of customer demand is for Bitcoin deposits and for converting to altcoins on the platform. She added that Coindirect will add support for additional deposit wallets on a monthly basis.
Coindirect is currently live in South Africa, the UK, Nigeria, and Kenya, with plans to expand.