As the financial landscape continues to embrace cryptocurrencies, Mastercard is making a move to stay ahead of the curve. In a recent announcement, the global payments giant revealed plans to expand its crypto card program, allowing for more seamless integration of digital currencies into everyday transactions. The decision to expand Mastercard’s crypto card program comes as the company recognizes the growing demand for cryptocurrency-related products and services.
Mastercard Seeks More Partnerships To Expand Its Crypto-Card Plans
Mastercard, the multinational financial giant, is preparing to extend its cryptocurrency payment card program by actively pursuing collaborations with a greater number of crypto firms. The company’s Head of Crypto and Blockchain shared this development as digital currencies continue to garner attention from regulators and traditional banks become increasingly cautious.
In its mission to incorporate cryptocurrencies into the mainstream, Mastercard has already teamed up with leading crypto exchanges such as Binance, Nexo, and Gemini. These partnerships have allowed the company to offer crypto-linked payment cards in select countries. Cards linked to Binance, for example, enable users to make payments in fiat currencies using their cryptocurrency holdings on the exchange.
Raj Dhamodharan, Mastercard’s head of crypto and blockchain, said:
“We have dozens of partners around the world who offer crypto card programs and they continue to expand. Providing access to crypto in a safe way is also part of our value proposition, and we’re continuing to do that.”
Mastercard Ensures Complete Regulation Before Launching Crypto-Cards
As banks become increasingly cautious of cryptocurrency clients, the sector faces heightened scrutiny following the collapse of several major crypto firms last year, including the bankruptcy of the prominent exchange FTX. Meanwhile, U.S. regulators are intensifying their efforts to address the market’s perceived lack of compliance.
In March, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission filed a lawsuit against Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange. The regulator accused Binance of operating an “illegal” exchange and a “sham” compliance program. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao, however, responded to the complaint by asserting it presented an “incomplete recitation of facts.”
While not commenting on Binance specifically, Dhamodharan assured that any card program “goes through full due diligence” and is subject to ongoing monitoring.
Major banks, such as Santander and NatWest, have imposed limits on the funds UK customers can transfer to cryptocurrency exchanges as a protective measure against scams and fraud.
When questioned about the possibility of Mastercard imposing restrictions on the amount of money that could be transferred to crypto exchanges via its payment network, Dhamodharan responded,
“We’re not here to pick winners. We’re not here to pick which transaction should happen or shouldn’t happen.”
Dhamodharan emphasized that users of Mastercard’s network undergo numerous compliance checks and also mentioned that the company has invested in cutting-edge crypto analytics technology. Dhamodharan said,
“Mastercard is really quite enthusiastic about the underlying blockchain technology that powers cryptocurrencies. We think more and more regulated money will come to this.”
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