Sonny Singh, formerly of Jumio, which handles payment verification, will pick up the chief commercial officer title. Steve Pratt, formerly of Visa, will become the company’s director of business development. And Gregg Zigler, formerly of PayPal, will become a senior developer.
All three hires strongly suggest that BitPay is gearing up for a major push into the mainstream payments arena. With the holiday season right around the corner, and bitcoin already on the fringes of the public consciousness, the company may be on the verge of a major marketing and merchant adoption initiative.
That suggestion shouldn’t surprise anyone familiar with BitPay’s recent marketing moves, which clearly have an awareness-raising element to them and are aimed directly at mainstream consumers. BitPay announced in June that it would be sponsoring the NCAA football St. Petersburg Bowl in December, branding it as the Bitcoin Bowl. That move alone may help bring bitcoin and BitPay into to the public discussion, as the bowl game will be broadcast on ESPN and become major sports news in the days leading up to the game. Likewise, BitPay also announced in June that it was sponsoring the Georgia Tech Athletics program for 2014-2015.