BitPay Inc. has more than doubled the processing volume it forecast for March, fueled by recent business moves. It also hired a veteran of the payment processor Global Payments to handle product management.

BitPay, which handles transactions in the digital currency Bitcoin, last month handled $5.2 million in Bitcoin transactions after earlier disclosing it would exceed $2 million. Bitcoin is designed to add cashlike traits, such as anonymity, to electronic payments.

BitPay also hired Kevin McInturff as its vice president of product management. McInturff, who is BitPay's third full-time employee, was previously director of application development at Global Payments. At BitPay, McInturff will handle plugins, client libraries and application programming interfaces. He will also manage its global integration partner program.

Two ventures helped BitPay increase its volume at the end of March. BitPay last month integrated with Amazon.com Inc.'s fulfillment service, which ships goods for merchants that store merchandise in Amazon's warehouses. The integration allows BitPay's merchant customers to accept bitcoins on their websites before having Amazon ship the merchandise.  The relationship doesn't allow consumers to use bitcoins directly on Amazon's website.

BitPay also reduced its processing fees to 0.99% for all merchants, dropping currency conversion fees.  

"Merchants are clearly appreciating the superior performance of our platform compared to all others in the marketplace," says Tony Gallippi, co-founder and CEO of BitPay, in an April 2 press release. "Any merchant selling high-ticket items over the Internet needs to look at Bitcoin. And with our recent reduction in fees, our merchants are using our all-inclusive 0.99% fee to offer discounts to their customers for paying in bitcoin."

During the final 8 days of March, BitPay processed more than $3 million in transactions. Also in March, the company approved 1,300 new merchants bringing their total clients to more than 4,500.

BitPay says its processing milestone puts it ahead of black markets such as Silk Road, which earned a reputation as an online marketplace for illegal substances and accepts payments in bitcoins.

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