Spend gold like money? Glint says its debit card makes it possible

A new debit card allows users to spend their gold like dollars.

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U.K. fintech company Glint launched its debit card in the U.S. on Monday. It can be used anywhere a Mastercard is accepted. Glint’s card and app make gold “an alternative global currency,” according to the company.

“Our mission is to bring a reliable gold currency to the fingertips of everyone in the world,” said Jason Cozens, founder and CEO of Glint. “We are excited to introduce Glint to the U.S. market and continue our steady growth towards democratizing gold.”

By backing up users’ assets with physical gold, Glint offers multi-currency accounts, though U.S. customers will only have access to gold and dollar wallets for now.

The company said the gold is stored in a Swiss Brink’s vault and insured by Lloyd’s of London. Allocated gold belongs outright to the owner, which the company said would shield users “from the destructive effects of inflation” and protect them from “the systemic risk of future global financial crises.”

Glint charges a 0.5 percent fee when buying or selling gold or spending in foreign currencies. There’s no fee for making a U.S. dollar or gold purchase in the U.S. using the card.

The service launched in parts of Europe last year. In addition to the U.S., the company said it will also launch in Canada, Japan and Scandinavia this year.

“Gold has a crucial historic role as money, and we see it defining a future whereby people can take control over their own income streams and not leave them to the mercies of banks,” Cozens said. “As the world inexorably moves to being cashless, Glint provides the perfect future-proofed solution to 24/7 globalized living."

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Glint’s U.S. operation is based in Boulder, Colorado. It has six people working there, leading operations, compliance, customer service, sales and marketing.

“We decided on Boulder … due to the state’s rich history in gold mining, vibrant culture and pristine natural surroundings,” Cozens said. “Boulder has also become a leading location for technology innovation, so the local talent pool will help us achieve our growth goals.”