Ferrari has begun accepting cryptocurrency payments for its luxury sports vehicles in the United States, with plans to expand in Europe by Q1 next year.
Enrico Galliera, Ferrari’s Chief Marketing and Commercial Officer, told Reuters that the decision to accept crypto in the U.S. and Europe was a direct response to requests from the market and dealers.
“Some are young investors who have built their fortunes around cryptocurrencies,” Galliera said. “Some others are more traditional investors, who want to diversify their portfolios.”
In the first half of 2023, Ferrari shipped more than 1,800 cars to its Americas region, including the United States. The luxury car manufacturer also sold 13,200 cars in 2022, with prices starting at $211,000 USD and increasing to as high as $2 million USD.
While Galliera didn’t go into details as to how many sports cars Ferrari is expecting to sell through crypto, he said that the company’s order portfolio is fully booked into 2025. Europe, the Middle East, and Africa is considered to be Ferrari’s largest region, accounting for 46% of its total car shipments in the first half of this year.
He noted that between the U.S. and Europe, there isn’t much difference in interest.
To facilitate the initial roll-out phase in the U.S., Ferrari has partnered with BitPay, one of the leading cryptocurrency payment processors. Initially, payments can be made in bitcoin, ether, and USDC, a stablecoin. BitPay will promptly convert cryptocurrency payments into traditional currency on behalf of Ferrari’s dealers, mitigating the impact of price fluctuations.
“Prices will not change, no fees, no surcharges if you pay through cryptocurrencies,” Galliera said. According to Galliera, the majority of Ferrari’s U.S. dealers have already signed or are expected to agree to this major step forward in luxury car transactions.
But for Ferrari, Galliera says that one of its main goals was avoiding the direct handling of crypto and shielding itself from the high volatility of these digital assets.
While many blue-chip companies have hesitated to embrace cryptocurrencies due to their volatility and regulatory concerns, Ferrari is joining the ranks of a select few luxury brands venturing into the crypto space, including Tesla, which briefly accepted bitcoin as payment in 2021 before it suspended the option over environmental concerns.
Despite these ongoing environmental concerns surrounding crypto mining, Galliera noted that many cryptocurrencies are actively working to reduce their carbon footprint through the adoption of new software and increased use of renewable energy sources. Ferrari remains committed to its goal of achieving carbon neutrality throughout its value chain by 2030.
While Ferrari did not disclose the number of cars it expects to sell through cryptocurrency payments, Galliera mentioned that the company’s order portfolio is robust, with bookings extending well into 2025. The move to accept crypto is seen as an opportunity to connect with a broader audience, including potential customers who may not have previously considered purchasing a Ferrari.
Importantly, BitPay will also ensure that the virtual currencies used for transactions come from legitimate sources, adhering to stringent compliance measures to prevent the use of cryptocurrencies for illegal activities or tax evasion.
Ferrari intends to expand its cryptocurrency payment option to Europe in the first quarter of the upcoming year, with further plans to roll it out in regions where cryptocurrencies are legally accepted. The company’s move reflects the growing acceptance and integration of digital currencies into various industries, including high-end luxury markets.
As Ferrari paves the way for cryptocurrency payments, it signals a shift in the traditional financial landscape, with digital assets increasingly becoming a mainstream means of conducting high-value transactions.