Visa's Crypto Strategy Remains Intact Despite Crypto Winter

The U.S. payment giant denies a Reuters report it is looking to slow down partnerships with crypto companies.

AccessTimeIconFeb 28, 2023 at 7:44 p.m. UTC
Updated May 9, 2023 at 4:09 a.m. UTC
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U.S. payments giant Visa (V) remains committed to investing in the crypto sector and supporting the technology despite recent failures in the industry, the company said Tuesday.

Reuters reported earlier Tuesday that Visa is “slamming the brakes” on new partnerships with crypto-related firms as the industry is facing renewed scrutiny after the collapse of once-popular crypto exchange FTX.

A Visa spokesperson told CoinDesk that isn’t the case.

“The recent failures do not change our crypto strategy and focus to serve as a bridge, helping connect both platforms and technologies emerging in the crypto ecosystem,” the spokesperson said. “That is where we have been investing and plan to continue to invest.”

In a tweet on Tuesday, Visa’s head of crypto, Cuy Sheffield, said reports of Visa wanting to slow down partnerships with the crypto space are inaccurate, and he reiterated that Visa continues to partner with crypto companies.

“Despite the challenges and uncertainty in the crypto ecosystem, our view has not changed that fiat-backed digital currencies running on public blockchains have the potential to play an important role in the payments ecosystem,” Sheffield said.

Visa recently signed a long-term global partnership with crypto payments app Wirex to expand its footprint in Asia-Pacific (APAC) and the U.K., to bring more payment options to consumers.

Mastercard was also reported to be taking a step back in the crypto space. A spokesperson from Mastercard, however, told CoinDesk the company still intends to "work with partners to bring relevant payments solutions and programs to market."

The person added, "Our efforts continue to be focused on the underlying blockchain technology and how that can be applied to help address current pain points and build more efficient systems for consumers and businesses."

UPDATE (Feb. 28, 2023 19:59 UTC): Adds comments from Mastercard spokesperson.


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Helene Braun

Helene is a New York-based reporter covering Wall Street, the rise of the spot bitcoin ETFs and crypto exchanges. She is also the co-host of CoinDesk's Markets Daily show. Helene is a graduate of New York University's business and economic reporting program and has appeared on CBS News, YahooFinance and Nasdaq TradeTalks. She holds BTC and ETH.

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