MasterCard has joined efforts with FinTech company Bakkt to allow thousands of banks and merchants onto its payments network in the US and offer a broad set of cryptocurrency solutions and services.
Georgia, US-based Bakkt will expand the company’s ecosystem of cryptocurrency partners, enabling crypto-as-a-service that targets providing customers rapid access to digital assets capabilities.
In turn, consumers will also be able to spend the cryptocurrency rewards they earn at retailers on MasterCard’s network. They will be able to purchase, sell and hold digital assets through custodial wallets supported by Bakkt’s digital asset platform.
“MasterCard is committed to offering a wide range of payment solutions that deliver more choice, value and impact every day,” Sherri Haymond, MasterCard’s executive vice president of digital partnerships, said.
“Together with Bakkt and grounded by our principled approach to innovation, we will not only empower our partners to offer a dynamic mix of digital assets options, but also deliver differentiated and relevant consumer experiences,” Ms Haymond said.
Launched in 2018, Bakkt — which spun off from Intercontinental Exchange — is a digital-asset platform that enables consumers to buy, sell, store and spend digital assets.
Users continue to look for new digital assets to use for everyday purchases.
Nearly half (48 per cent) of US respondents said they had purchased some type of crypto in the first half of this year, Bakkt found in its consumer crypto survey, in which 2,000 people were interviewed.
The MasterCard new payments index revealed that 77 percent of millennials said that they are interested in learning more about cryptocurrency, with 75 percent admitting they would use cryptocurrency if they understood it better.
MasterCard will also integrate crypto into its loyalty solutions. It will allow its partners to offer cryptocurrency as rewards and create interchangeability between loyalty points and other digital assets.