A new way to use your cryptocurrency without all of the transfers.
Since 2008, cryptocurrency and blockchain have been a popular discussion topic amongst the general population.
Although it's something that has yet to gain majority adoption, a relatively large percentage of individuals are still invested and that percentage is growing.
However, one of the benefits of owning cryptocurrency is also a drawback for certain investors.
Cryptocurrency like Bitcoin is held within something called a "wallet." A wallet is essentially that; a digital space for crypto buyers to stash their coins on the blockchain.
The security of holding funds on the blockchain is an enormous benefit. The issue for some investors is that those funds are not easily spendable.
If an investor wanted to spend money they have moved into their digital wallet, they would have to sell any crypto they bought and transfer it back to their bank account; a process that could take 7-10 business days.
What is it?
Lyra, a YC-backed startup, is bringing us a solution.
The startup allows individuals to purchase Visa prepaid cards and spend their money at online stores.
Similar to Affirm or Klarna - the micro-loan providers for e-commerce shoppers - the product gives buyers the opportunity to create virtual cards to spend on one-time purchases or subscriptions.
The virtual card works with over 10,000 supported sites.
The critical question for most crypto buyers interested in the product is which cryptos are accepted? After all, Motley Fool estimates there are over 12,000 cryptocurrencies.
As of now, Lyra supports 9 cryptocurrencies:
The startup also offers a browser extension which allows users to create virtual cards directly within Google Chrome.
How does it make money?
Lyra is completely free for users on the front end.
Instead, their money is made on the back end where they receive a percentage of revenue brought in from the e-commerce sales whenever one of their virtual cards is used.
As e-commerce stores grow more comfortable with accepting crypto, the need for virtual cards may not be needed. However, we seem to be pretty far off from that reality.
Lyra provides a great solution for the interim.