Payments in cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin (BTC) have been on the rise at Croatia’s largest supermarket chain Konzum this year despite an ongoing bear market.

After introducing cryptocurrency payments for the first time in 2021, Konzum has seen an increase in purchases made with crypto payments, the company’s director of business applications Ines Barbier told Cointelegraph.

Konzum officially started accepting cryptocurrencies as payment for its products in December 2021, allowing customers to pay online with nine cryptocurrencies such as BTC and Ether (ETH) as well as Tether (USDT) and USD Coin (USDC).

Since then, the supermarket chain has expanded its cryptocurrency payment option to several self-pay cash registers in physical demo stores. Konzum is also still working with local crypto payment company Electrocoin to bring crypto payments to all 700 physical stores across Croatia.

According to Barbir, the rollout of the new payment method has been successfully implemented, and Konzum is working to expand the option to pay with cryptocurrency. The executive did not specify the exact numbers for payment volume growth since crypto payments were introduced.

A company spokesperson noted that the increased crypto payments on Konzum are in line with the growing adoption of cryptocurrencies in Croatia, saying:

“Regardless of the bear market, we are satisfied with the interest that continues to grow. Public interest in cryptocurrency payments continues to increase steadily as well as interest in implementing cryptocurrency payments in Croatia.”
The representative noted that Croatia ranks first in the European Union when it comes to the level of cryptocurrency adoption. This is “partly due to the emergence of fintech companies such as our Electrocoin partners,” the spokesperson added.

Noting some uncertainty about crypto payments, the representative said, “This is mainly due to insecurity and skepticism about new technologies, but also due to the state of regulation in the crypto industry.”

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The government of Croatia has been somewhat silent on crypto regulation in recent years, while local crypto advocates have been working towards self-regulation. In 2018, the Croatian National Bank confirmed that cryptocurrencies are not legal tender in the country and are not recognized as foreign currency or payment instruments.

Despite having a certain level of apparent uncertainty around cryptocurrencies, Croatia has emerged as one of the most crypto-ready countries in the world. According to a report by the forex education platform Forex Suggest, Croatia has a crypto readiness score of 6.2 out of 10, along with countries such as the United Arab Emirates, Georgia and Romania.

Source: CoinTelegraph