Every year on May 22, cryptocurrency enthusiasts in different cities across the globe gather to commemorate the World Bitcoin Pizza Day, in celebration of the day when the digital currency was first used in a real-world transaction.
On that day, 12 years ago, Laszlo Hanyecz, an American, made history when he paid for two Pizzas with 10,000 Bitcoins, an amount that today would be worth over $300 million, becoming the first ever to use a digital currency to pay for a real-world item.
This year, for the first time, Africans also joined in the celebration of this global event that brings together thousands of cryptocurrency users to share their love for the rather predominantly unconventional digital assets.
The events happened simultaneously last Sunday in 11 African cities including Nairobi, Kampala, Port Harcourt, Yenagoa, Ibadan, Lagos, Calabar, Kano, Abuja, and Ile-Ife in Nigeria, and Cape Town in South Africa.
They were co-sponsored by Bundle Africa, a digital currency asset management platform, and other country-specific sponsors and organised by independent bitcoin zealots and entrepreneurs.
In Nairobi, the event was convened by Yvonne Kagondu, an blockchain business and community consultant and bitcoin entrepreneur, at iHub.
Attendees were treated to free pizza and beverages, after listening to experienced traders, market analysts, technology commentators, developers and other experts. They interacted, posed questions, and connected at the end of the sessions.
Ms Kagondu says, cryptocurrencies have become so popular in Kenya and Africa at large, it is no longer possible to ignore such events, as many yearn to learn more and venture into the business.
Eric Michubu, a Bitcoin entrepreneur and the regional director of Bundle Africa for East Africa said, “There is more awareness of cryptocurrencies in Africa and a bigger community of blockchain enthusiasts and people interested in learning about the technology.”
“This event enlightens people about cryptocurrencies, separates fact from myth, for informed, and credible crypto-trading,” said Rufas Kamau.