Cryptocurrencies have proven to be an invaluable tool for those unable to access traditional financial services (“the unbanked”) or suffering from the insane monetary policies of local governments – a perfect description of the majority of Nigerians. But other than cryptocurrency mining and a crypto-paying job, you still need to get coins somewhere.
And a P2P marketplace Bitpapa is that place.
Why crypto is so popular in Nigeria
It is estimated that over 30% of Nigeria’s more than 200 million residents have now owned crypto. According to the Statista Global Consumer Survey, this country was the world leader in cryptocurrency adoption in 2021. In its 2022 Into the Cryptoverse Report, global exchange KuCoin says 35% of Nigerian adults have used crypto in the last six months.
Most importantly, this phenomenal cryptocurrency adoption was well underway well before the 2021 bull market. Bitcoin’s rise to popularity among locals began in 2016 when the Nigerian Central Bank (CBN) implemented strict capital controls to curb the use of the US dollar across the country. They didn’t see Bitcoin coming.
Crude oil exports remain the mainstay of Nigeria’s economy, but the irony is that since 2015 Nigeria has received more money through remittances than through the sale of oil. Under such circumstances, the emergence of Bitcoin as a vehicle of value transfer was a matter of time – as was the ban on cryptocurrency operations imposed by the CBN on January 12, 2017.
Using the Zimbabwean dollar and its spectacular collapse as a vivid example, it’s easy to see why crypto has gained so much traction across the continent. Nigeria’s national currency, the naira, is losing 10-20% of its purchasing power every year, and that says a lot about why so many Nigerians have been investing in crypto in recent years.
Indeed, the official inflation rate of 13% in Nigeria for 2020 is a far cry from 550% in Zimbabwe, but there is definitely more to come. Add to this the limited access to basic financial services in the country and Bitcoin is becoming king here.
The throne is never empty.
Bitpapa is coming to town
The story of cryptocurrency adoption in Nigeria is not unique to this nation, nor is it specific to African countries in general. In fact, people all over the world suffer from inflation and abuse of power. This led to the rise of P2P marketplaces, which are extremely popular in places with uncertain regulations and a lack of legal clarity.
Bitpapa has been in this business since 2018 and, like other P2P marketplaces, allows for free conversion of cryptocurrencies to fiat and vice versa. Unlike centralized exchanges, here you don’t need to make a deposit in your local currency to buy crypto. And you don’t have to go through an identity verification process either.
When you want to buy bitcoin, you pay the seller directly by transferring the payment to their account or card, while the seller’s cryptocurrency is held in escrow for the entire duration of the trade.
This approach eliminates the risk of losing money due to the bad faith of the seller. He cannot run away with his coins after the buyer pays him. On the other hand, the deposited coins are only released by the seller when he confirms receipt of the money from the buyer. This also protects the seller from a malicious buyer.
It is easy to see that unlike centralized exchanges, the marketplace does not participate in the transfer of funds from buyer to seller and may not be able to rip you off or freeze your funds. And once you receive the coins from the seller, you can deposit them into an external wallet at your convenience.
Bitpapa has developed an extremely convenient trading platform that comes with an easy-to-use web interface, a handy mobile app and a smart Telegram bot. These allow you to exchange BTC, ETH, TON, XMR, and USDT for a range of fiat currencies. You can also use the service as a free multi-currency crypto wallet to store your coins.
And the good news is that the service is now available in Nigeria as well as some other African countries.
What do Nigerians get out of it?
Bitpapa brings together English-speaking Nigerian buyers and sellers who are now able to protect the purchasing power of their savings by switching from the ever-depreciating Nigerian naira to Bitcoin and other cryptos. Advanced users can use Bitpapa to create sophisticated trading strategies and take advantage of crypto’s everyday volatility.
Converting naira to crypto is as simple as selecting cryptocurrency (e.g. bitcoin) and fiat currency (naira) in the filter form and selecting the seller of coins from the list of sellers according to your personal preferences and the ones you prefer payment method make a trade with the seller.
You can buy crypto on Bitpapa using payment methods such as Chipper Cash, gift cards from a range of outfits, bank transfers. Finally, you can use any payment method that allows you to prove the payment to the seller. If you don’t find the method you want, let the Bitpapa support team know and they’ll add it in no time.
Bitpapa plans to hold both online and offline events aimed at raising cryptocurrency awareness among Nigerians, creating employment opportunities for local talent, implementing rewards and loyalty programs for active Nigerian traders, etc.
By using cryptocurrencies wisely, you can make money from both short-term price swings and long-term strategic growth, whichever comes first. Additionally, by building a solid stash of digital assets and managing them carefully, you can turn the tables on the financial authorities themselves, who are out to rob you of purchasing power.
Bitpapa aims to provide the right tools to circumvent the pitfalls of ubiquitous currency devaluations and end financial slavery once and for all.
This post contains sponsored advertising content. This content is for informational purposes only and is not intended as investment advice.