In 2018, the state of Ohio announced a new option to allow the state’s businesses to use Bitcoin to pay certain tax obligations. This week, Overstock announced that it will use that new option to pay the company’s Commercial Activity Tax (CAT).
Ohio’s launch of its OhioCrypt payment portal has provided companies operating in the state a way to use digital currency to pay their taxes. It currently offers that option only for businesses that are subject to any of 23 specific business taxes. The CAT is one of those taxes and is owed by all companies with business receipts totaling more than $150,000.
Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel told Fortune that Overstock is not the first company to choose Bitcoin as a tax payment option – that honor went to an Ohio auto dealer, apparently – but the online retailer is the first company with a "national presence" to make that choice. Mandel acknowledged that the new payment option is unlikely to be used by many companies for now but he anticipates more interest in the future.
Overstock CEO Patrick M. Byrne has been a cryptocurrency fan for some time. In a statement, he stressed the importance of government acceptance of digital currency and other emerging technologies:
“We have long thought that thoughtful governmental adoption of emerging technologies such as cryptocurrencies (when accompanied by non-restrictive legislation over these technologies) is the best way to ensure the U.S. does not lose our place at the forefront of the ever-advancing global economy.”