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Mastercard sees maturing cryptocurrency market, expands crypto program for card issuers

Mastercard is making it easier for fintech firms and emerging brands to become partners for its crypto program.

Image by: MasterCard Inc./ Wikimedia Commons

Tue, 21 Jul 2020, 14:30 pm UTC

Cryptocurrency adoption is growing nonstop as both financial institutions and consumers are warming up to the idea of using digital currencies as a payment option. To help accelerate the trend, Mastercard has expanded its cryptocurrency card program and made it easier for fintech firms to become its partners.

Mastercard announced on June 20 that it is simplifying the membership process into the Mastercard’s Accelerate program for fintech and emerging brands. In fact, applicants can be onboarded “in a matter of weeks,” according to Cointelegraph.

Mastercard’s enhanced Accelerate program will give support to crypto card applicants in terms of market entry, growth, and international expansion. As new partners, they will get assistance during the integration phase of Mastercard’s technology, as well as gain benefit from the company’s expertise in market research and cybersecurity.

For the new partners, they must ensure to give the utmost privacy and security protection for their customers. Partners must also comply with applicable laws and regulations including Anti-Money laundering rules and provide a level playing field for all stakeholders.

Mastercard also announced Wirex as the “first native cryptocurrency platform to be granted a Mastercard principal membership,” according to Businesswire. This principal membership status will allow the London-based crypto payment processor to issue payment cards directly.

“The cryptocurrency market continues to mature, and Mastercard is driving it forward, creating safe and secure experiences for consumers and businesses in today’s digital economy,” Mastercard executive vice president for digital assets and blockchain products and partnerships Raj Dhamodharan said. “Our work with Wirex and the wider crypto ecosystem is accelerating innovation and empowering consumers with more choice in the way they pay.”

Wirex’s ability to issue crypto cards to its clientele directly makes it easier for its customers to buy or exchange cryptocurrencies. They can also instantaneously change their cryptos into fiat and use their cards anywhere in the world where Mastercard is accepted.

“We are very excited for Wirex to be the first crypto-native company granted principal membership from Mastercard,” Wirex co-founder and CEO Pavel Matveev said. “It represents a growing interest and recognition in the acceptance of cryptocurrency by leading bodies and regulators and will help us to realize our vision of empowering everyone to experience a world where all currencies, traditional and crypto, are equal.”

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