Simon Fraser University poised to embrace Bitcoin |

The university is assessing the feasibility of accepting the cryptocurrency for some payments and installing Bitcoin ATMs in its bookstores

by STEPHEN HUI on AUG 20, 2014 at 12:00 PM

SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY business student Mike Yeung likens the status of Bitcoin to that of the Internet in the early 1990s. Although many people have heard of the headline-grabbing digital currency, they aren’t sure what to make of it—never mind how to use it.

Yeung told the Georgia Straight he’s optimistic that SFU will give Bitcoin a boost toward mainstream adoption by becoming the first university in Canada to accept the cryptocurrency on its campuses. The Vancouver resident believes this would grant Bitcoin “a bit more legitimacy” while giving the university the “wow factor” it needs to stand out from the pack.

“When an institution like SFU or any university looks deeply into it and adopts it and embraces it, it kind of makes Bitcoin more valid for a lot of people,” Yeung said during an interview outside SFU Woodward’s. “Especially if you can spend it on campus or buy some on campus; that would be great.”

Yeung is the founder and president of the Simon Fraser Bitcoin Club, the first group of its kind in the country, and the CEO ofSaftonhouse Consulting Group, a local cryptocurrency firm. He said he’s working with SFU’s administration to bring Bitcoin point-of-sale terminals and ATMs to the university’s campuses in Vancouver, Burnaby, and Surrey as soon as this fall.

Mark McLaughlin, SFU’s executive director of ancillary services, confirmed the university is assessing the feasibility of accepting Bitcoin payments and installing Bitcoin ATMs in its bookstores. He told the Straight a Bitcoin pilot project could also include some of SFU’s dining services.


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