Venezuela President Maduro Touts Trezor Bitcoin Wallet on National TV
On Nov. 6, President of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro appeared on state-run television station Venezuelan Television Corporation (VTV), holding a crypto hardware storage device allegedly developed by major wallet supplier Trezor. The video is posted on the official Facebook page of President Maduro.
Trezor says it is unaware of the alleged Trezor representatives who appeared on the Venezuelan national TV alongside Maduro.
In a news segment titled "Private companies of
cryptocurrency are operative in Venezuela," Maduro was meeting a company that introduced themselves as alleged representatives of Trezor in Venezuela, Trezorvenezuela.
The alleged representing firm has a Facebook page and an account on Instagram, where it refers to the official website of Trezor, trezor.io.
Following the reports on social media, the official Trezor account on Twitter denied the information that the company featured on VTV is formally connected to Trezor.
The official company said that they have not official resellers in Venezuela, noting they were not aware of the issue. In a tweet on Nov. 7, Trezor said they launched an investigation:
“To clarify the situation, we have no official resellers in Venezuela (http://trezor.io/resellers/ ) as well as we were not aware about the technological fair. We’re investigating this issue.”
Online commentators suggested that the company appearing on VTV was apparently an unlicensed reseller of Trezor.
an official statement to confirm that Trezor and Satoshilabs did not attend Maduro’s crypto fair in Caracas on Nov. 6. In a blog post, the company elaborated that Trezorvenezuela was an authorized reseller of Trezor based on a mutual agreement of Q3 2018 before the company removed them from the authorized resellers list in June 2019 due to inactivity. However, Trezor does not restrict the sale of Trezor products by Trezorvenezuela in any specific regions, the company added.
Additionally, Trezor highlighted its stance towards the political situation in Venezuela by claiming that Trezor and Satoshilabs “do not associate with any political figure, serving or retired, in Venezuela or in any other region.” In May 2019, Trezor provided 150 Trezor One devices to their friends from the charitable organization Bitcoin Venezuela to be used purely for charitable purposes, the company added.
After launching Venezuela’s oil-backed cryptocurrency Petro (PTR) in February 2018, Maduro officially ordered one of the country’s leading banks, Banco de Venezuela, to accept PTR in July 2019.
According to a report by Venezuelan newspaper El Universal on Nov. 6, Maduro conducted a conference at the Banco de Venezuela in order to discuss measures to bring more adoption to Petro cryptocurrency. At the event, Maduro reportedly announced the procedures for the sale and purchase of products via Petro.