Goto Mall, a Bitcoin Mecca?
The largest underground shopping center in South Korea called Goto Mall recently announced that it will start accepting bitcoin. Beginning mid-December, shoppers can pay with bitcoin at the mall’s 620 stores, according to local publications.
Travel guide website Travel Vui describes:
Goto Mall is Seoul’s largest underground mall. This hidden gem markets everything from clothing to flowers and home decor at mind-blowingly cheap prices.
Goto Mall is also known as Gangnam Terminal Underground Shopping Center. It is connected to one of the major subway transfer stations at which Seoul subway lines 3, 7, and 9 operate. It “currently has an estimated 500,000 visitors per day and is rated as the largest underground shopping mall,” Kyeonggi news outlet reported.
A sample of stores in Goto Mall.
The mall’s foot traffic is expected to increase significantly due to its surrounding area being renovated to increase customer base. For example, “when the reconstruction of the nearby apartment complex is completed, the [number of] visitors is expected to increase further,” the publication added.
Furthermore, “about 30 bus routes including ordinary buses and airport buses,” pass through the area, reported the Bridge Economy newspaper. “When the new influential World Duty-Free opens in Gangnam Central City next year, it is expected to further increase foreign customers,” the publication elaborated, adding that:
Goto Mall is expected to turn into a bitcoin mecca.
Partnership with HTS Coin
In order to accept bitcoin, Goto Mall has partnered with a local cryptocurrency exchange HTS Coin. The exchange, which opened last month, has developed a smart payment system using cryptocurrencies and has recently launched a mobile app.
The partnership signing event between Goto Mall and HTS Coin.
According to Kyeonggi, the mall had previously tested bitcoin as a payment option where shop owners accepted bitcoin directly. However, it was terminated since store owners “often lost their passwords and could not use the coins,” the publication detailed, noting that this cannot happen with the HTS Coin system installed.
Bitcoin will be offered alongside other payment methods accepted by the mall such as cash, credit card, and Alipay. Goto Mall CEO Chung Gwi Yeon commented:
I think it is very meaningful to be able to settle the bitcoin used by foreigners and young people at Goto Mall.