When it comes to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, it is incredibly difficult for most companies to obtain proper banking relationships. As we all know, banks are extremely wary of Bitcoin on the outside, yet they have all taken a vast interest in the digital currency when it comes to internal matters. German bank Sparkasse is blocking any incoming and outgoing bank transfers related to cryptocurrency since a few days.
The news has been sent to us by Bram Ceelen, who works with the Anycoin Direct exchange in The Netherlands. Their customer support has received several complaints from Germany-based users who have a bank account with the Sparkasse bank. As you can imagine, this is not good news for Bitcoin, and certainly not for a cryptocurrency exchange platform.
Sparkassa refunds money transfers to users if they even suspect it has something to do with cryptocurrency. For example, if someone purchases Bitcoin through Anycoin Direct, and uses Sparkasse to transfer the money, that transfer will be reversed sooner or later. You can imagine how negative this is for Anycoin Direct, as they usually send out funds immediately once the transfer is confirmed in the system. In the end, they end up with no money and a loss in cryptocurrency as well.
German cryptocurrency enthusiasts who use Sparkasse to purchase Bitcoin or currencies have reported several different scenarios : either let the transfer go through after they received a phonecall from the bank informing them about the block order, or they just got called up to hear about how their bank transfer could not be processed, without any further explanation from the bank clerk.
Anycoin Direct had to take countermeasures in order to protect themselves from further financial loss. AS things stand right now, the are unable to fulfill the Bitcoin/other cryptocurrency order immediately when a payment is processed by Sparkasse. The user will have to wait until the money clear in Anycoin Direct’s bank account, which usually takes one to two business days.
“We hate to be forced to work this way but Sparkasse leaves us no other choice. We are running a honest company but the bank just blocks transactions without contacting us or the customer, very frustrating. This is exactly why we need Bitcoin! The bank abuses his power without any good reason or explanation,” Bram Ceelen told CryptoArticles.
We will investigate this issue further and get in touch with other exchanges to see if they have noticed a similar pattern. An interview with the folks of Anycoin Direct will follow in the next few days.