AXA Switzerland Accepts Bitcoin for Insurance Paymentsby Fintechnews Switzerland April 16, 2021
AXA Switzerland announced that it will now allow its customers to pay their bills with bitcoin from April onwards, being the first insurer to offer this solution.
Private customers can currently pay their premiums for all non-life products. However, this payment option is not offered for life insurance products due to regulatory reasons.
AXA said that to make the payments with bitcoin, customers would need a reference number, the amount, and their own Bitcoin wallet.
The amount in Swiss francs is converted into bitcoins in the background, and the payment can then be completed via desktop or smartphone.
There will be a progress bar that shows how long the indicated exchange rate between bitcoin and Swiss francs remains valid.
The person who pays the premium bears no exchange rate risk during this time. If the time runs out before a transaction is concluded, the exchange rate is updated, and the timer starts over. AXA doesn’t charge any special fees for bitcoin payments.
In future, the new payment option will appear on bills sent by e-mail. Customers who wish to pay with bitcoin will have to go online to make the transfer by entering the reference number and amount and then confirming their entry.
AXA added that it will not hold any bitcoins on its balance sheet as the cryptocurrency payments will be routed to crypto broker Bitcoin Suisse who will convert them into Swiss francs.
The insurer said in a statement that further payment options besides bitcoin are set to go live in the near future, including TWINT, a mobile app-payment solution for the Swiss market.
Additionally, AXA mentioned that said it intends to gather some experience with bitcoin before deciding whether to accept other cryptocurrencies.
“This is AXA’s response to growing demand from its customers for alternative payment solutions, with new technologies playing an ever greater role,”
said Claudia Bienentreu, Head of Open Innovation at AXA Switzerland.