“As far as we know, we are the first university in Switzerland to accept bitcoin payments,” said René Hüsler, deputy rector at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences at Arts.
According to an article in the Luzerner Zeitung, the university wants to “gain experience in the practical use of the technology”. It has already recorded an incoming 0.15159696 in bitcoins – paid by a student in the Department of Economics for his bachelor’s semester bill in the amount of 640 Swiss francs.
But the university doesn’t want to hold a credit balance in cryptocurrencies; bitcoins are subject to strong currency fluctuations, a risk that Lucerne doesn’t want to take. Instead, the university converts incoming bitcoins once per week into francs – and daily for amounts above 10,000 francs.
It has also entered into a contract with the Zug-based company Bitcoin Suisse AG, which assumes responsibility for trading the cryptocurrency. And it bears the risks for the currency.
“This makes it possible for the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts to accept bitcoins without owning any,” explained Hüsler.