Black Friday is an event that has spawned all sorts of retail spin-offs.
First came Cyber Monday, a second bite at the apple from online retailers. Then there was the slow creep into Thanksgiving Day. Two years ago Bitcoin Black Friday made its debut, and it's a holiday tradition that's quickly gaining ground.
Bitcoin Black Friday had a moderately successful start, with just 20 merchants initially supporting the campaign. Throughout the day, though, more began to list deals on the site—with the number climbing to 50 by the time the shopping day was through.
Last year, the number surged to 600 merchants, and sales hit the equivalent of $6 million. This year, said the event's founder, Jon Holmquist, 1,200 merchants are expected to take part, and it's looking to branch the customer base out beyond the circle of existing bitcoin users.
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"We have two things planned," he said. "First is the ability to instantly purchase bitcoin with your credit card: a small amount, like $25 worth. For most people, that's not too much of a risk. And we're also going to have a section [of the site] where you can purchase something for a small amount of money."