Bitpay is working with Dutch startup Bitstraat to turn Amsterdam into the Bitcoin capital of the world by giving away free hardware to retailers in the city.
Bitstraat provides a tablet-based POS terminal for accepting Bitcoin payments. Processing is carried out by Bitpay with transactions directly converted into euros and retailers never in possession of the cryptocurrency.
Merchants can either pay EUR10 a month or EUR120 upfront for the terminal but to promote the technology Bitpay is offering 100 free to firms based in Amsterdam. So far 22 merchants have signed up, including cafes, bars, shops and a 'boutique hostel'.
In June the Dutch central bank issued a warning to the nation's banks about the perils of dabbling in Bitcoin-related businesses. However, the currency has its fans in the country, with one fanatic even implanting two NFC tags under the skin in his hands to store his digital cash.