Bitcoin Not a ‘Legitimate’ Currency, But a Trusted Digital Currency Could Be: Starbucks Chairman

Bitcoin is not a “legitimate” currency, but a digital currency could one day form the linchpin of a cashless future, at least according to Starbucks Executive Chairman Howard Schultz.

Schultz made this prediction during a post-earnings conference call on Thursday, stressing — as mainstream executives so often do — that distributed ledger technology (DLT) can be leveraged outside of cryptocurrency-based applications.

“I don’t believe that bitcoin is going to be a currency today or in the future,” Schultz said during the conference call, audio of which can be found on the Starbucks website. “I’m talking about … the possibility of what could happen — not in the near term, but in a few years from now — with a consumer application in which there’s trust and legitimacy with regard to a digital currency.”

The former Seattle Supersonics owner stressed that Starbucks is not planning to launch its own digital currency, as both Kodak and Burger King Russia have done in recent months.

Rather, he said that increasing consumer interest in digital payment options makes it necessary for companies like Starbucks to anticipate future consumer behavior.

“I’m not bringing this up because Starbucks is announcing that we are forming a digital currency or we’re investing in this,” Schultz said,”I’m bringing this up … as we think about the future of our company and the future of consumer behavior.”

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