A Japanese business will begin paying its workers partially in bitcoin, in a bid to gain a better understanding of how the digital currency works, Agence France-Presse reports.
Tech firm GMO Internet said it will pay up to 100,000 yen (£660) a month to approximately 4,000 employees via bitcoin from February next year, according to the agency.
Company spokeswoman Harum Ishii told AFP that employees are free to choose whether or not they want a part of their salary to be paid in bitcoin
“We hope to improve our own literacy of virtual currency by actually using it”, she said.
The Tokyo-listed company announced in September that it plans to spend more than $3m on mining bitcoin in the first six months of 2018.
GMO said at the time that it believes bitcoin will be part of future “universal currencies” and that the virtual currency will create a “borderless economic zone”.
The company was not immediately available for additional comment when contacted by The Independent on Friday.
The value of bitcoin has been sent on a rollercoaster ride of rises and slumps in recent months.
The cryptocurrency, which is attracting a huge amount of mainstream attention, was worth $17,483 as of Friday morning, according to Coinbase exchange.
Its value is up more than 150 per cent over last month and more than 2,060 per cent over the last year.
Bitcoin is one of a number of digital currencies that exists online and has no state regulation.
Blockchain, the technology behind the virtual currency, is a public ledger that stores anonymous records of every bitcoin transaction.
On Thursday, UK overseas territory Gibraltar said that it will introduce the world’s first licence for fintech firms using blockchain from next month.