TOPLINE Fast food giant McDonald’s has started accepting bitcoin as a form of payment in El Salvador after the country became the first to adopt the cryptocurrency as legal tender Tuesday.
California-based bitcoin payment processor OpenNode confirmed to Forbes it has formed a partnership with McDonald’s to allow it to begin accepting bitcoin (Editor’s Note: OpenNode earlier told Forbes that Panda Express was also using bitcoin, but has since said that was an error and we have clarified the piece).
Bitcoin can now be used to pay at all 19 McDonald’s locations in the country, as well as online and through the delivery app, OpenNode said.
Though this appears to be the first major American company to adjust to El Salvador’s cryptocurrency initiative, OpenNode spokesperson Ryan Flowers said his team is “currently onboarding multiple multi-billion dollar businesses based in El Salvador.”
“Just walked into a McDonald’s in San Salvador to see if I could pay for my breakfast with bitcoin … fully expecting to be told no,” cryptocurrency journalist Aaron van Wirdum wrote in a tweet Tuesday morning. “But low and behold.”
El Salvador on Tuesday became the first sovereign government to adopt bitcoin as legal tender alongside its existing currency, the U.S. dollar. It allows the country’s residents to pay taxes and other debts using bitcoin, and for businesses to widen their payment options to the cryptocurrency. However, El Salvador’s proclaimed “Bitcoin Day” got off to a rocky start as the cryptocurrency market plunged, with the price of bitcoin falling from over $52,000 to $42,830, its lowest level in nearly three weeks on Tuesday morning. Bitcoin recovered to just under $46,957 by 1:45 EDT, still 9% below a day earlier.