Mastercard has partnered with a cryptocurrency exchange to enable its partners and merchants in the United States to offer crypto solutions such as buying, selling, and holding cryptocurrencies. “We want to offer all of our partners the ability to more easily add crypto services to whatever they’re doing.”
At the Money20/20 event on Monday, Mastercard (NYSE: MA) and cryptocurrency exchange platform Bakkt (NYSE: BKKT) announced a “multifaceted partnership.”
The collaboration aims to “make it easier for merchants, banks, and fintechs in the U.s to embrace and offer a broad set of cryptocurrency solutions and services,” according to the announcement. “Bakkt expands Mastercard’s ecosystem of cryptocurrency partners by enabling crypto-as-a-service, allowing for quick access to cryptocurrency capabilities.”
The two businesses explained:
Mastercard partners will be able to offer cryptocurrency solutions. These include the ability for consumers to buy, sell and hold digital assets through custodial wallets powered by the Bakkt platform and streamlined issuance of branded crypto debit and credit cards.
According to the company, the payments giant has relationships with over 20,000 financial institutions worldwide, and there are 2.8 billion Mastercards in use. According to the October 2019 Nilson Report, Visa and Mastercard each had 52.9 million merchants — more than any other company in the world.
Mastercard also announced that cryptocurrency will be integrated into its loyalty solutions, enabling its partners to “offer cryptocurrency as rewards and create fungibility between loyalty points and other digital assets.” The announcement continues:
“This means that consumers can earn and spend rewards in cryptocurrency instead of traditional loyalty points and seamlessly convert their crypto holdings to pay for purchases.“
Mastercard’s executive vice president of digital partnerships, Sherri Haymond, was quoted as saying: “We want to offer all of our partners the ability to more easily add crypto services to whatever it is they’re doing. Our partners, be they banks, fintechs, or merchants can offer their customers the ability to buy, sell and hold cryptocurrency through an integration with the Bakkt platform.”