Square's chief financial officer said during an investor call on Tuesday that it has seen a recent uptick in bitcoin engagement via its Cash App amid the market turmoil driven by the coronavirus crisis.
"Adoption and engagement of fractional equity investing in Bitcoin has accelerated in recent weeks given recent market interest and volatility," CFO Amrita Ahuja said on the call.
Square previously reported more than $178 million in bitcoin purchase volumes in the fourth quarter. For 2019 as a whole, the payments firm registered more than $516 million worth of bitcoin sales, translating to $8 million in gross profits – less than 2% of gross profit from subscription and transaction-based services.
The ability to purchase bitcoin is one of the features that have been rolled into Square's Cash App, all aimed at providing greater financial access – most recently the ability to purchase fractionalized shares of public companies.
During the call, CEO Jack Dorsey remarked that "we're seeing strong engagement and volume for Bitcoin" while Ahuja said that "Bitcoin and equity investing have seen strong volumes and adoption given the buying opportunity that some of our customers perceive in the market."
As for the Cash App itself, Ahuja remarked that customer acquisition activity has surged in recent days.
"Cash App last week set an internal record for us in terms of customer acquisition with a record number of new actives in the week, primarily from organic acquisition a lot of that coming out of the creative use cases that we're seeing in social media," Ahuja said.
Ahuja went on to say:
"Cash App is an entirely separate ecosystem with performance untethered from our seller ecosystem, which helps individuals manage their money across a broad set of daily utilities sending spending and investing. We believe Cash App has the ability to differentially support customers in various economic environments."
Square made a note of the role of bitcoin in its Cash App via slides shared during the investor presentation, which are included below:
Notably, bitcoin – perhaps unsurprisingly – factored Square's monetization strategy.
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