Payments giant Visa Inc’s CEO Alfred Kelly has revealed his firm’s plans to enable cryptocurrencies trading on its network. Kelly, who is also chairman of the firm, explains that there is no reason not to add cryptos when these are increasingly becoming “a recognized means of exchange.”
Digital Gold Segment
In an earnings call with analysts, Kelly opines that due to Visa’s “global presence, its partnership approach as well as its trusted brand”, the fintech giant is “uniquely positioned to help make cryptocurrencies more safe.” The CEO adds that Visa also wants to make cryptos “more useful and applicable for payments.”
However, to achieve this, Kelly says his organization will divide the crypto market into two segments, namely cryptocurrencies and digital currencies. Describing the assets that will be included in the cryptocurrency segment, the CEO says these will be viewed “as digital gold.” According to Kelly, such currencies are “predominantly held as assets that are not used as a form of payment in a significant way at this point.” The Visa boss then discusses the firm’s plan for such currencies saying:
Our strategy here is to work with wallets and exchanges to enable users to purchase these currencies using their Visa credentials or to cash out onto a Visa credential to make a fiat purchase at any of the 70 million merchants where Visa’s accepted globally.
According to Kelly, this strategy will be similar to Visa’s approach to “connect closed-loop wallets such as Line Pay and Paytm.”
Digital Currency Segment
Concerning digital currencies that will feature in the second segment, the Visa CEO says these will be consist of “fiat-backed digital currencies including stablecoins and central bank digital currencies.” He adds that these emerging payments innovations can potentially be “used for global commerce much like any other fiat currency.”
Meanwhile, the Visa CEO reveals some of the 35 organizations that have already chosen to issue Visa cards. These include leading digital currency platforms and wallets providers like “crypto.com, Blockfi, Fold, and Bitpanda.” According to Kelly, these wallet relationships “represent the potential for more than 50 million Visa credentials.”
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