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Square's Dorsey Is All In on Bitcoin as Currency of the Future

Bloomberg logoBloomberg 5/16/2018 Julie Verhage and Lily Katz

Jack Dorsey© Bloomberg/Bloomberg Jack Dorsey (Bloomberg) -- Jack Dorsey, speaking to a crowd of cryptocurrency enthusiasts, showed he was completely in sync with their view that digital currencies are the way of the future.

“The internet deserves a native currency; it will have a native currency,” Dorsey, the chief executive officer of Twitter Inc. and Square Inc., said Wednesday at Consensus, a blockchain and cryptocurrency conference in New York City. “I don’t know if it’ll be Bitcoin or not,” he said, but “I hope it will be.”

This wasn’t the first time Dorsey had spoken fondly of digital currencies. The executive tweeted in 2016 that he would “love to see a digital currency thrive.” In his role at Square, he has helped promote cryptocurrency. In 2014, the payments company started letting merchants accept Bitcoin. Since then, San Francisco-based Square has said it’s introducing Bitcoin trading for almost all users of its Cash App, which lets users send money to friends and family.

Not everyone at Square was as enthusiastic as Dorsey was about the move.

“I’ll be frank, this was a pretty contentious move in the company,” he said. A number of people at Square were skeptical about the technology and making access to digital currencies much easier. Even today, Dorsey added, there are debates and even fights over the topic, and some of the company’s board members are resistant to cryptocurrencies.

Square reported earlier this month that it reaped $34.1 million in first-quarter revenue from selling Bitcoin, but it cost the company $33.9 million to buy the tokens, meaning Square only made about $200,000.

Read more: Snoop Dogg, Dorsey bring crypto to masses during blockchain week

“This technology is a fundamental shift to our world and can have so many positive outcomes,” Dorsey said at the Consensus conference, the biggest of about two dozen events during New York’s “Blockchain Week.” “We have to do the work to educate regulators and educate the SEC why this technology is important.”

To contact the reporters on this story: Julie Verhage in New York at jverhage2@bloomberg.net;Lily Katz in New York at lkatz31@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Mark Milian at mmilian@bloomberg.net, Andrew Pollack, Molly Schuetz

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.

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