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Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/76592024@N06/

Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/76592024@N06/

Earlier this week, self-governing British Crown Dependency Isle of Man announced plans to introduce friendly regulation for the island’s growing bitcoin industry. Yesterday, a group of six companies announced a plan to actively support the island’s growing cryptocurrency industry, offering free and steeply discounted services for bitcoin and digitial currency related startups.

According to a report on CoinDesk, the program is largely informal, with interested companies encouraged to directly approach participating providers. Broadband provider Wi-Manx, accounting firm KPMG, online gambling payment processor Counting House, staffing companies Dixcart and Hamblin Employment Group, and the Isle of Man Post Office are currently involved in the bitcoin-incubator initiative.

The incubator appears to be an outgrowth of the Manx Digital Currency Association, which launched in April as a first step towards bringing “forward thinking and enterprising individuals together to both initiate and support those new to the market, and guarantee the island’s future in this very lucrative field.” Should the project prove successful, other Manx businesses are expected to join the incubator.

Often characterized as a tax-haven for businesses and wealthy individuals in the U.K., the Isle of Man could probe to be an important hub for bitcoin-based businesses in the region. Locals businesses have been largely supportive of the digital currency projects, seeing them as rare opportunities to establish a truly homegrown industry. Bitcoin AVM company QwikBit has already established a presence on the island, and the Manx government has issued an open invitation for bitcoin exchanges to operate there.

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