Bitwala is a company that provides a bank account with an exchange to buy and sell Bitcoin and Ether.
The company offering this service was created in October 2015 in Berlin, Germany, by Jörg von Minckwitz, Jan Goslicki and Benjamin P. Jones.
Initially the idea was to create a blockchain-based global payment service to allow faster and cheaper transactions, but later an exchange was added to allow customers to buy and sell cryptocurrency.
Therefore, through this service it is possible to make SEPA and SWIFT money transfers in over 20 fiat currencies, exchange fiat currency in BTC or ETH, receive, store and send cryptocurrency thanks to the integrated crypto wallet, and make payments using a Mastercard debit card.
As of December 2018 Bitwala’s service is regulated according to European standards, resulting in a German bank account with an integrated wallet and exchange crypto.
In order to use the service it is first necessary to create your own account on the appropriate site, or thanks to the App, registering with all your data so you can go through a process of identity verification by video call.
In fact, since it is a real bank account, it is necessary to follow the same procedures necessary to open an online bank account in Germany.
Once the identity verification process is complete, you can create your own crypto wallet, and store the backup code offline in a safe place so that you can restore it if necessary.
In fact, Bitwala’s crypto wallet is non-guardian, meaning that you are the only one who has access to your funds and can arrange transactions. The company therefore does not have access to users’ wallets, so it is very important to store the backup code in a safe place, because in its absence it is impossible to recover the wallet in case of loss or malfunction of the device on which it is installed.
Once these procedures have been completed, you can start performing both fiat and crypto operations.
Obviously the first operation must be a deposit, which can be made by SEPA transfer or via SWIFT circuit, directly to the associated bank account, or in BTC or ETH on the crypto wallet.
The bank account is a traditional full German account, provided by SolarisBank AG, with all the operations that can be carried out on a normal bank account.
It is also possible to request a debit card associated with the account in order to be able to make payments on the Mastercard circuit drawing automatically from the funds deposited in the account.
As soon as the deposit is credited, you can start exchanging fiat currencies with cryptocurrency, or vice versa, thanks to the integrated exchange.
The exchange allows an exchange volume of up to €30,000 per week, with a fixed commission of 1% on purchases and sales of cryptocurrency. There are no costs for deposits or withdrawals.
Opening a bank account is free of charge, and there are no card fees or account management fees either. In addition, thanks to the deposit protection in force in Germany, the account is insured up to €100,000.