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Westpac Joins The Bitcoin Rush

Westpac Joins The Bitcoin Rush

Its venture capital fund Reinventure has invested in Coinbase, one of the world’s pre-eminent bitcoin companies, a bank spokesman yesterday conformed.

Reinventure joined a US$75 million raising venture by Coinbase, which also won support by some of the world’s largest venture capital firms, the New York Stock Exchange and former Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit.

“We plan to work closely with Reinventure and share insights into the use of digital currencies globally,” Coinbase said in an online announcement.

Coinbase provides a range of services including one that allows customers to exchange domestic currencies into bitcoins and transfer payments in the crypto-currency: a major change for the once very conservative Westpac.

Coinbase also operates an exchange where speculators can bet on direction of bitcoin pricing, and various anti-money laundering and security services.