Shift Debit Card Combines Digital Currency, Loyalty Points and Cash
More Americans are beginning to embrace digital currencies such as Bitcoin. As these cryptocurrencies grow, consumers may be looking to loyalty points to get the most out of the money they are spending.
A new debit card known as Shift is looking to bring these opportunities together with standard money on one platform.
Shift was founded by Meg Nakamura, Eugene Otto and Greg Kidd. Together, these three individuals wanted to give a traditional debit card the option to hold both virtual and regular currency for consumers to spend offline. They also wanted to give people a way to access their loyalty points whenever they want to spend them. Shift can do all of this.
“We learned very quickly that no bank here in the U.S. is willing to take that leap and actually support something like this,” said Nakamura. “They were just too nervous and no one was willing to take that reputational risk.”
This is what has made Shift difficult to create until now–a lack of acceptance on the banking side. Nakamura feels that American banks will eventually want to work with the Shift platform as the demand for such a service increases.
“It’s just going to take time. U.S. banks are engaged and excited about the technology and its potential,” she said. “They’re watching regulatory direction closely.”
Earlier this month, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued an advisory warning to consumers about the dangers of virtual currencies, referring to these currencies as the “Wild West” of the financial world.