Nigeria is home to one of Africa’s leading bitcoin economies and has emerged as one of the most active digital currency trading hubs on the continent. In Nigeria, you can find bitcoin startups, digital currency exchanges, meetups, conferences, and a continuously rising demand for bitcoin.
Unlike in many African countries, where bitcoin trading is often limited to Whatsapp groups and social media networks, Nigeria has a multitude of exchanges where locals can buy bitcoin with nairas.
In this article, you will discover the most active and most secure digital currency exchanges you can use to buy bitcoin in Nigeria.
NairaEx is one of the most reliable and longest standing bitcoin exchanges in Nigeria. The exchange was founded in 2015 and is simple and easy to navigate with an inbuilt real-time exchange rate of bitcoin to naira.
Buying bitcoin on NairaEx is very simple. All you have to do is sign up to NairaEx, get verified by uploading a valid identity card, deposit money using a bank transfer or PerfectMoney, and proceed to place a buy order. Upon confirmation of your order, the transaction will be initiated and once it has been completed your account will be funded with the bitcoin you just bought.
The South African digital currency exchange ICE3X recently opened its doors in Nigeria giving Nigerians an opportunity to buy bitcoin, litecoin, and ether using nairas through the use of the VoguePay payment processor.
To buy bitcoin from ICE3X, you will need to first create an account on ICE3X and fill out the form with your personal details. Once signed up, you will receive an email to verify your account. To fund your ICE3X account with your nairas, you will need to login to your newly created ice3X account, proceed to the DEPOSIT/WITHDRAW tab in the menu bar to make a deposit using your newly created VoguePay wallet (you can get more info here on how to set up a VoguePay wallet).
After successfully funding your account, you can proceed to place a buy order following these simple steps:
- To buy bitcoin, click on the naira balance in the deposit/withdraw section of your ICE3X account.
- Click on the trading tab in the blue menu at the top and click on the bitcoin tab.
- Enter how many bitcoins or fraction of bitcoin you wish to buy.
- Enter your buying price (the current bitcoin rate sale price is on the exchange by default, but you can enter any price you want).
- Your total order slip including your commission will then be shown.
- Review your transaction and click on the buy tab underneath to execute your order.
Remitano is a peer-to-peer exchange that has recently entered the African market. The platform is experiencing rapid growth in Nigeria due to its fast, safe and reliable nature.
On Remitano, users can easily buy or sell bitcoin using a range of different payment methods. As a way of protecting both the buyer and seller, Remitano offers an escrow service. This is where the seller transfers the amount of bitcoin the buyer wants to a locked Remitano account. The buyer then sends the payment to the seller with no fear of not receiving the paid for bitcoin. Similar to LocalBitcoins.com, Remitano also displays its list of sellers based on their transaction history.
In order for you to buy bitcoin, you have to create an account on Remitano.com and then proceed to the homepage and click on the buy button. After keying in your desired volume and bitcoin address, a list of top sellers will be listed below depending on the rating. You will then click on any seller you wish and proceed to make payment. After successfully making your payment, Remitano will then release the funds to the seller and you receive your bitcoin.
LocalBitcoins.com is a global peer-to-peer bitcoin trading platform. It is a marketplace that helps connect buyers or sellers from different places around the world.
The platform allows users to create buy or sell advertisement with the prices they want to trade at. The exchange platform rates sellers based on their past transactions. As a way of protecting both parties, LocalBitcoins acts as an escrow and has a customer support team ready to help in case of any issues that may arise during a transaction.
To buy bitcoin on LocalBitcoins exchange, you need to create an account on the platform, verify your identity, click on any seller on the homepage that is willing to sell you bitcoin at a price you feel comfortable with and a payment method that works for you.
After clicking on the ‘buy’ button, you will be given details of the transaction including the seller’s terms and conditions. You can choose whether or not to proceed with the particular buyer depending on how comfortable you are with these terms.
To execute a trade, type in the blue box how much bitcoin you want in naira and also add a message to the seller after which you click on the ‘send trade request’ button. Once the payment has been made, click on the ‘I have paid’ button and you will receive your bitcoin on your LocalBitcoins wallet within minutes.
Paxful is a peer-to-peer bitcoin marketplace that has gained substantial popularity in Nigeria.
To buy bitcoin on paxful.com, first, you need to click on the ‘buy bitcoin’ option in the top menu bar. Then you enter the naira amount of bitcoin you intend to purchase and select the payment method you would like to use.
After selecting a way to pay, you click on the ‘search’ button to get a list of sellers who are willing to sell you the amount of bitcoin you requested and are also inclined to your payment method.
Just like on LocalBitcoins, the reputations of sellers are scored and it is highly advisable that you select buyers with high reputation to deal with. You then select a seller and begin your purchase order. The trade details will then pop-up on the left-side of the screen and a chat box on the right side of the screen where you can chat with the seller so you can both track the stages of transaction execution.
Once the trade is completed you will receive your bitcoin on your Paxful wallet.
Luno, an online bitcoin exchange and wallet provider, is one of the most widely used bitcoin exchange platforms in Nigeria. Luno offers a free bitcoin wallet that comes with an inbuilt buy and sell feature that enables customers to buy or sell bitcoin directly from within their Luno wallet. It is designed in such a way that newcomers to bitcoin can easily use the wallet.
To buy bitcoin from Luno, you need to first and foremost;
- Create an account by signing up at Luno.com
- Verify your identity by uploading a valid identity card
- Proceed to deposit money to your account using any of the various payment options available.
Buying bitcoin from Luno comes in two ways;
- Instant buy or sell (recommended for beginners), which allows users to buy or sell bitcoin either from the Luno wallet or from the website.
- Exchange orders (for advanced or experienced users), which is a little bit more technical as it involves placing an order on the exchange at a specific price and waiting for it to get matched.
Bitkoin.Africa is a new Nigeria-based peer-to-peer exchange that allows Nigerian bitcoin users to buy and sell bitcoin from and to one another in a similar manner as on LocalBitcoins or Paxful.
The new exchange was launched in October 2017 and has since seen substantial user uptake in Nigeria.
The exchange platform is one of the oldest e-currency platforms in the country with several shop outlets across the country. If you are looking for a place to buy bitcoin offline, then Naira4Dollar is that place. To know any of their offline shops closer to you visit Naira4Dollar.com.
However, you can also make use of their service online where you can purchase bitcoin using various payment methods.
Port Harcout-based NGExchanger is another e-currency exchange that is well known in Nigeria and specialises in the buying and selling of bitcoin.
To buy bitcoin from the platform, you will need to create an account and get the account verified by uploading a valid ID card. However, you can still buy bitcoin without having a verified account. In such instances, you will need to have a funding limit of $1000 per day with the minimum buying amount being $10. Follow these simple steps to buy bitcoin on NGExchanger:
- After registration, login to your account and click on buy
- Select the e-currency account type you want to buy (in this case click on bitcoin)
- Input the desired volume of bitcoin you want to buy in US Dollars
- Enter your bitcoin wallet address
- After clicking on the proceed button, a payment invoice will be generated with a transaction number. Make payment to the bank details of NGExchanger that will be displayed and include the transaction number in your payment invoice.
- After successful payment, click on confirm to record and save the transaction. Once the payment is received, your bitcoin address will be funded and a message sent to your email confirming that.
There are also other local e-money exchange platforms that allow you to buy bitcoin such as Instant Gold Nigeria, Nigeria Gold Exchange and CryptoMart.
However, when it comes to buying bitcoin, it is advisable to use well-known established exchanges such as Paxful, LocalBitcoins, NairaEx, ICE3X, and Luno as they offer the most secure buying options.
Online Retailer Newegg Now Accepts Bitcoin in Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda
Online retailer Newegg has expanded its bitcoin acceptance to 73 countries, including Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda.
Newegg and BitPay Partnership
Newegg has been collaborating with BitPay since 2014 to facilitate bitcoin payments in the US and Canada. “Since this initial implementation, not a single chargeback has been required for any bitcoin transaction on Newegg. The companies now build on this successful collaboration by extending the bitcoin payment option to the 73 new countries announced today,” an official statement said.
BitPay processes bitcoin transactions worth more than $1 billion yearly for its e-commerce partners. The bitcoin payments company uses blockchain technology to offer transparent transactions and to eliminate chargebacks. BitPay also “enables Newegg to increase its margin on each bitcoin transaction by avoiding credit card fees typically assessed on credit card purchases.”
Anthony Chow, Newegg’s president global sales, said: “Five years ago, we were one of the first major online shopping destinations to accept Bitcoin, and our early-adopter customers were quick to embrace this new payment option. Broadening the ability to pay with bitcoin to the majority of our global network underscores our commitment to bring innovation to the online shopping experience, and answers customers’ growing preference for our bitcoin payment option.”
Newegg sells products such as electronics, gaming equipment, and smart home appliances to over 38 million registered users in North America, Latin America, the Middle East, Europe, and the Asia Pacific.
Buying Products with Bitcoin
Buying items on Newegg with bitcoin is simple. Like with other online shopping processes, you add your items to a cart and select the shipping address of your choice. Once you do this, you proceed to choose bitcoin as the payment option of your choice, review your order, and then pay using BTC. Newegg allows users to pay using computer-based, web-based, or smartphone-based digital wallets.
While South African payments service PayFast recently dropped bitcoin, Newegg is extending this payment option to more people across the globe, highlighting the benefit of using a borderless, decentralised digital currency to shop online.
How Popular is Bitcoin Gambling in South Africa?
Ever since bitcoin launched in 2009, it has had a tremendous impact on many different industries, including online gambling. Having a reliable and secure payment method is imperative in order to have a worthwhile gambling experience, no matter which forms of betting you subscribe to.
When online gambling websites began accepting bitcoin, players all over the world had the ability to make quick and easy payments, while also maintaining privacy. In a sense, bitcoin (and the cryptocurrencies that followed) started a revolution in the online payment sphere and its impact has been felt all over the world.
One country that has significantly enjoyed the benefits of bitcoin is South Africa. South African gamblers are becoming ever more fond of cryptocurrencies and bitcoin ranks among the most-used.
Bitcoin’s Popularity in South Africa
Before we can explore the prominence of bitcoin gambling, we first have to take a look at how well cryptocurrencies are received in the country.
While bitcoin is popular all over the world, it is especially liked in developing countries. Nowhere is the previous statement more true than in South Africa. In a recent study, researchers found that bitcoin ownership in South Africa exceeds the world average by two times. It is estimated that 5.5 percent of the global population owns cryptocurrency, while in South Africa 10.7 percent hold a crypto balance. In the previous year, crypto transfers have increased by 25 percent in South Africa in a trend that seems to have swept over the entire continent.
This Calvin Ayre opinion shows that the transactions are used for both financial and recreational purposes, meaning that cryptocurrencies including bitcoin are becoming a part of everyday life. As one can imagine, recreation can also cover online gambling and there is a rising number of people using bitcoin to place bets on their favorite casino games or sporting events.
The Dark Side of Bitcoin Gambling in South Africa
Cryptocurrencies are becoming increasingly more popular in South Africa. However, one thing that many overlook is that bitcoin and altcoins are not regulated by any government authority. Effectively, bitcoin is not recognised as a legitimate and official transaction solution. So how does this affect the online gambling scene?
Аnother article about bitcoin for gaming shows that crypto gambling in South Africa is illegal due to lack of regulations from the appropriate authorities. Any South African players engaging in bitcoin gambling is doing so at their own risk and no government institution can step in to assist them in case of fraud. That is not to say that all gambling operations accepting bitcoin from South Africans are fraudulent, but there are no fail-safes and no measures in place to protect users.
So far, the South African government has been slow in implementing some if any regulations to ensure the rights of online players and the safety of any crypto enthusiasts.
Of course, this does not even begin to tackle the problem of regulating bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general. The added anonymity features and the lack of centralised supervision make crypto hard to regulate.
Moreover, identifying the owner of a wallet is downright impossible without cooperation from other parties. This does not account for the fact that crypto users are developing additional measures to protect their anonymity when using their currency of choice, e.g. hardware wallets or dispersing their funds across multiple wallets.
Future of Bitcoin Gambling in South Africa
It is clear that the South African gambling scene is ripe for further implementation of bitcoin and blockchain technology. However, slow actions on the government’s side will likely stall any potential progress and leave all bitcoin gambling operations in a legal gray area, at best.
Unless regulators take a more proactive approach, it is unlikely that any significant developments will be made in the near future, putting thousands of gamblers at risk.
Naturally, placing the safety of its citizens should be the South African government’s first priority and ensuring that no fraudulent operation remains active for long.
South African Online Payments Processor PayFast Drops Bitcoin
South African online payment gateway PayFast will cease supporting bitcoin payments from July 20, 2019, due to high transaction fees and long confirmation times. The company expressed its frustrations through an announcement on its website.
Bitcoin’s Current Limitations
Although digital currency is meant to make online transactions cheaper, faster, and convenient, PayFast observed that bitcoin’s current limitations have made it difficult for the company to offer it as an alternative to traditional payment methods.
“Unfortunately, there are a number of limitations and design flaws unique to Bitcoin that make it an impractical substitute for cash, including high transaction fees and long confirmation times for buyers. We have tried various ways to mitigate these problems, but unfortunately, these issues are fundamental. The resultant poor user experience has led us to re-evaluate Bitcoin as a payment method on our platform and a decision has been taken to discontinue support for Bitcoin from midnight 20 July 2019,” PayFast explained.
The PayFast platform has a ten-minute window for the confirmation of bitcoin payments. However, the Bitcoin network has failed, in most cases, to confirm payments within this time period resulting in unsuccessful transactions. The Bitcoin network can currently not handle the volume of transactions it gets at a faster speed, PayFast noted.
Luno has been enabling bitcoin payments on the PayFast platform by acting as an intermediary. “To eliminate any risk posed by bitcoin’s price volatility, Luno locked the bitcoin to ZAR exchange rate for a ten-minute window. If the transaction was not sufficiently confirmed within ten minutes, the payment was unsuccessful and a refund would be due,” PayFast said.
The Bitcoin network can only handle seven transactions per second compared to VISA’s 24,000. This limits bitcoin’s usefulness as a means of exchange and an asset. Moreover, users making payments using bitcoin risk incurring non-refundable processing fees when the transaction fails.
Despite these challenges, the Lightning Network promises to improve bitcoin transactions by making them instant, low-cost, scalable, and acceptable across different platforms.
PayFast Remains Open to Cryptocurrency
PayFast hopes that as this space continues to grow, cryptocurrencies will be able to handle faster payments.
“We are eagerly following the developments of cryptocurrencies and the supporting technologies that are aiming to enable faster payments. As soon as these become workable alternatives, we look forward to supporting cryptocurrencies as a payment method in the future,” the South African company stated.
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