The financial services arm of Mercado Libre, Mercado Pago, has partnered with Paxos to allow its Brazilian users to buy, sell, and hold crypto within its popular app, Paxos said in a blog post on 2 December.
According to the announcement, Mercado Pago will integrate Paxos’ blockchain infrastructure to give its Brazilian users access cryptocurrencies directly in the app they use to make payments and send fiat. The new feature will be rolled out by the end of December, and will initially support Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), and the Pax Dollar (USDP) stablecoin. The head of strategy for Paxos, Walter Hessert, said in a statement:
“This is a transformative moment for Latin America. Mercado Pago will be able to offer a seamless access to crypto and stablecoins for more than million Brazilians. This will accelerate mainstream adoption of cryptocurrency and stablecoins across the continent. We are thrilled to partner with Mercado Pago to make it possible.”
Once the feature has been launched, Mercado Pago users will be able to directly buy crypto using their existing balance of fiat, without the need of opening a separate account at another exchange. Paxos will be responsible for handling crypto trading and custody for the app in a similar way to how it does for payments giant PayPal, with which it partnered back in October 2020.
While Mercado Pago was initially launched to handle transactions from Mercado Libre — a popular website for buying and selling goods — it quickly outgrew its purpose and is now a payment system accepted in many stores. Even though Mercado Pago offers services in several countries in Latin America, it chose to launch the crypto functionality in Brazil first due to it being its largest market.