Avalara Becomes A Bitcoin Supporter

avalara08 May 2014 / Wall Street Journal – Avalara Inc., a cloud-based service that automatically calculates sales tax for businesses, is supporting bitcoin.

Although the company isn’t yet seeing demand for transactions in the digital currency, according to Senior Director of Product Webb Stevens, customers should be able to conduct business in whatever currency they choose without worrying about whether they’re in compliance with regulations.

“Bitcoin starts to open up a number of accounting questions,” Mr. Stevens said. “It’s not necessarily a new set of issues…but sales tax can be incredibly complicated, and Avalara tries to make sales tax compliance very simple.”

Although it’s too soon to tell how popular bitcoin will become, activity around the cryptocurrency continues.

Vaurum, which enables financial institutions to host their own bitcoin exchanges, raised $4 million in seed funding this week from Avalara investor Battery Ventures, among others, and Bloomberg said last month it would list bitcoin prices on its terminals, The Wall Street Journal reported. Meanwhile, a startup called Coinme has installed a bitcoin ATM in Seattle, near Avalara’s offices.

The engineering effort required to support bitcoin was not much, Mr. Stevens said, although Avalara’s software does now support eight or more significant digits—as opposed to the two required for the dollar and the Euro—so people can keep track of their tax liabilities in smaller units, given the current exchange rates for bitcoin….. Read more


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