Visa has announced that spending using its crypto cards has topped $1 billion in the first half of 2021.
By comparison, Visa estimates that crypto spending in the same periods in 2020 and 2019 was only a fraction of that amount.
This is a positive outcome for the company that has initiated patnerships with more than 50 crypto operators, inluding Coinbase, Blockfi, and Crypto.com.
In the patnerships, cards powered by Visa enable consumers to convert their crypto to fiat for their spending needs. Another card type lets consumers earn crypto rewards on spending fiat.
One such patnership is between Visa and Coinbase, a leading cryptocurrencies exchange. Coinbase Visa debit card lets consumers spend any of the crypto they hold on Coinbase, anywhere Visa is accepted.
The card also lets consumers earn rewards for their spending.
Visa also has a patnership with BlockFi, a crypto lending service, whereby customers can earn bitcoin worth 1.5% on every transaction they do.
In March 2021, Visa began a pilot program with Crypto.com for settling transactions over ethereum using USD Coin (USDC).
Visa CFO, Vasant Prabhu, said:
“We are doing a lot to create an ecosystem that makes crypto currency more usable and more like any other currency.
“We see a lot of volume on our [network] of people buying crypto currencies at these various regulated exchanges and as far as we can see that trend continues,”
– Chief Financial Officer, VISA
Visa rival, Mastercard, is also in line to launch a card with American crypto exchange, Gemini.
The card will make it possible for consumers to earn rewards in crypto.
A recent survey by MasterCard indicated that over 90% of consumers intend to use new financial technologies, such as crypto in the next year. The survey also showed that 75% of millennials would use crypto if they understood it better.
Visa, on its part, believes crypto cards, biometrics, and QR code can disrupt the $18 trillion global market for cash and cheque transactions.
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