Payment Services Giants See Crypto as Opportunity, Not Threat: MoffettNathanson

Visa, Mastercard and PayPal are expanding their crypto capabilities and continuing to invest across the fledgling industry.

Dec 16, 2021 at 6:01 a.m. UTC
Updated Dec 16, 2021 at 3:10 p.m. UTC

Payment services giants Visa, Mastercard and PayPal don’t see the rise of the crypto industry as a threat, and will continue to invest across the crypto ecosystem, New York-based research firm MoffettNathanson told clients in a note Wednesday.

  • The note underscores the growing acceptance of crypto among older payment services companies and highlights their efforts to adapt to a changing environment. The three companies spoke at MoffettNathanson’s crypto and blockchain event earlier this month.
  • Visa sees crypto’s relevance extending beyond payments and itself as a layer 2, or companion network, that can operate on top of the blockchain network, as the company does with fiat-based networks. Visa is also expecting strong volume growth over the next one to two years from partnerships with crypto wallets, the company’s senior vice president and global fintech head, Terry Angelos, told MoffettNathanson.
  • Mastercard is benefiting through cross-border crypto on- and off-ramp flows at crypto exchanges and wallets, and sees crypto as an opportunity to build new products, said Raj Dhamodharan, executive vice president of blockchain and digital asset products. The company is also aiming to become an on-ramp to the non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace, and to add cryptocurrencies to its multi-rail network as native currencies for settlement.
  • Meanwhile, PayPal is investing in education-related initiatives in hopes of reaching a wider audience. The company is also working on opening its platform to allow interaction with decentralized finance (DeFi) networks, and the ability for users to transfer crypto in and out of its digital wallet safely, said Edwin Aoki, the company’s tech fellow and chief technology officer of blockchain, crypto and digital currencies.


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Michael Bellusci is CoinDesk's crypto payments reporter.