| 26 May 2024, Sunday |

Visa launches crypto advisory service for financial institutions, merchants

As the popularity of digital currencies accelerates, Visa Inc, the world’s largest payment processor, launched a worldwide crypto advice service for customers such as banks and merchants on Wednesday.

Visa’s move comes amid unprecedented investor demand for crypto services, and the company’s latest offering is aimed at financial institutions looking to attract or retain customers with a crypto offering, retailers interested in non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and central banks investigating digital currencies.

Visa’s services include teaching institutions about cryptocurrencies, allowing customers to access the payment processor’s network for digital products, and assisting with backend operations management.

“We came to Visa to learn more about crypto and stablecoins, as well as the use cases that are most important for our retail and commercial business lines,” Uma Wilson, executive vice president of UMB Bank, a regional U.S. lender, explained.

According to a recent worldwide study conducted by Visa, over 40% of cryptocurrency owners polled would be willing to transfer their primary bank to one that offers crypto-related goods within the next 12 months.

Visa now uses its network to facilitate the purchase, sale, and custody of digital money. It also provides a credit card that allows users to earn bitcoin on purchases, as well as the ability to settle transactions on its payment network using USD Coin, a stablecoin cryptocurrency whose value is directly tied to the US dollar.

However, price stability is required for cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin to be utilized as a means of exchange, said Vasant Prabhu, Visa’s Chief Financial Officer.

“It’s really difficult for a retailer to accept (bitcoin) as a currency if the price fluctuates from $60,000 to $50,000 in a few hours,” Prabhu added.

“I’m not sure cryptocurrencies like bitcoin will ever be used as a method of trade.” “Stablecoins will,” he said, adding that Visa would support such transactions when the time came.


  • Reuters