PayPal’s interest in cryptocurrency on rise as it looks to hire a blockchain engineer and researcher

The two job openings, posted on the company’s website, are being seen as indications of PayPal’s aspirations in cryptocurrency

Digital payments giant PayPal is hiring cryptocurrency and blockchain experts amid rumours that the company will roll out direct sales of cryptocurrency to its 325 million customers. The job descriptions, which are publicly available on PayPal’s website, added to speculations regarding the payment company’s entrance into the crypto market. If true, PayPal’s interest in cryptocurrency can be viewed as a major step towards mainstream adoption of virtual currencies.

The first job listing titled “Technical Lead – Crypto Engineer” describes that the individual will be responsible for “new initiatives for PayPal global with a focus on agility, time-to-market and innovation.” It further states that a successful candidate must join its team in Chennai, India. The role also involves “designing, developing and maintaining key crypto products/features targeted towards availability, performance and scalability of PayPal services.”

The second listing states that PayPal is looking to hire a blockchain research engineer to work with its “newly formed group within the Strategic Technology Enablement team chartered with establishing expertise and opinions on emerging blockchain technologies and their potential uses within PayPal.”

The job requirements have risen speculations primarily because it asks for applicants with experience in C++, asymmetric cryptography and cryptographic libraries.

Speculations that PayPal will finally throw its hat into the cryptocurrency ring have been doing rounds recently. CoinDesk quoted a source that claimed: “My understanding is that they are going to allow buys and sells of crypto directly from PayPal and Venmo.” The source also referred to a built-in wallet that will enable trading. A second source stated that an official announcement might be expected “in the next three months, maybe sooner.” The report further stated that Coinbase’s long-standing relationship with PayPal might give it an edge over rival BitStamp for future collaboration.

This is not the first time PayPal’s job openings have fuelled rumours regarding its plans for the crypto markets. Earlier this year, PayPal’s job openings for engineers willing to join the firm’s blockchain research group was seen as an indication of the FinTech giant’s interests.

PayPal’s blockchain ambitions with Facebook-led Libra did not prove fruitful, with PayPal being the first company to pull out of the project. Since then, rumours of PayPal’s growing interest in an independent move into the crypto market have emerged.

“We are a strong believer in the potential of blockchain. The digitization of currency is only a matter of when not if,” PayPal Chief Technology Officer Sri Shivananda had said earlier this year.

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