Several business leaders have expressed enthusiasm about the world of cryptocurrency, and Starbucks chairman Howard Schultz ranks among them.
In a recent Starbucks earnings call, Schultz shared his interest in cryptocurrencies, stating, “I personally believe that there is going to be a one or a few legitimate trusted digital currencies off of the blockchain technology. And that legitimacy and trust in terms of its consumer application will have to be legitimized by a brand and a brick-and-mortar environment, where the consumer has trust and confidence in the company that is providing the transaction.”
Some technology and finance companies have begun the process of creating their own cryptocurrencies, but Schultz stressed that Starbucks is not heading in that direction. Because cryptocurrencies work best due to their decentralized nature, company-specific currencies would likely be ineffective. Schultz hints that Starbucks is in a great position to take advantage of blockchain technology and existing cryptocurrencies; however, he adds that there are currently no such plans in the company’s business model.
Schultz also does not expect Bitcoin to be the cryptocurrency that goes mainstream, stating, “I don’t believe that Bitcoin is going to be a currency today or in the future.” He didn’t provide reasons for his dismissiveness toward Bitcoin, but speculation is that he may be concerned about the fees and the congestion of the network.
Bitcoin has had wider adoption in some countries, though. Japan, South Korea, and the Philippines are all proponents of the currency, which has been legalized and regulated in those countries since mid-2017. Individuals, as well as many leading businesses, have embraced the use of cryptocurrency, with more growth on the horizon.
As with any cryptocurrency, long-term scaling solutions, efficiency, and stability are all keys to mainstream adoption and acceptance of the payment method.