Crypto in Mexico, Mercado Pago enters the market

Cryptocurrencies are not experiencing their best times these days. FTX, one of the biggest crypto exchanges, announced last week it would initiate bankruptcy proceedings in the United States, “triggering a potentially massive meltdown in the industry,” wrote Reuters.

But this hasn’t discouraged Mercado Pago, the online payment platform owned by Argentina-based Mercado Libre that wants to be the go-to source for Mexicans interested in getting into cryptocurrency.

In an interview this week in Forbes México, Pedro Rivas, the director of Mercado Pago, said his Paypal-like service already has 150,000 cryptocurrency users in Mexico, and now wants to reach the 1 million mark it has obtained in Brazil in only a few months.

With 5 million people in Mexico using Mercado Pago as of 2021, according to ComScore data cited by Forbes México, Rivas said his company is in a good position to gain a important share of the cryptocurrency market here. Around 12 million Mexicans already have some cryptocurrency, Rivas added.

By next month or early 2023, people will be able to use Mercado Coins to transfer funds to others within the Mercado Libre ecosystem. Going forward, Mercado Libre will accept Mercado Coins as payment for products, and will use them for refunds or cashback in its loyalty program.

Technically, a Mercado Coin (worth about 2 pesos initially) is an Ethereum ERC-20 token. Ethereum is a blockchain that issues Ethers, one of which was worth 23,312 pesos (US $1,207) as of Wednesday morning, significantly below its Nov. 12, 2021 high of 95,306 pesos (US $4,644 at that time).

By next month or early 2023, people will be able to use Mercado Coins to transfer funds to others within the Mercado Libre ecosystem. Going forward, Mercado Libre will accept Mercado Coins as payment for products, and will use them for refunds or cashback in its loyalty program.

Technically, a Mercado Coin (worth about 2 pesos initially) is an Ethereum ERC-20 token. Ethereum is a blockchain that issues Ethers, one of which was worth 23,312 pesos (US $1,207) as of Wednesday morning, significantly below its Nov. 12, 2021 high of 95,306 pesos (US $4,644 at that time).