Payments giant Mastercard Inc MA is bringing crypto-linked credit and debit cards to users in the Asia Pacific region.
What Happened: Mastercard said it will launch crypto-funded payment cards for users in the region after partnering with three of the APAC’s leading crypto service providers — Amber Group, Bitkub and CoinJar.
“For the first time, consumers and businesses in the Asia Pacific region will be able to apply for crypto-linked Mastercard credit, debit or pre-paid cards that will enable them to instantly convert their cryptocurrencies into traditional fiat currency, which can be spent everywhere Mastercard is accepted around the world,” according to the company.
The rollout of Mastercard's crypto services in the region comes at a time when interest in cryptocurrencies is at an all-time high.
According to a survey from Mastercard New Payment Index, 45% of those surveyed in the APAC region said they are likely to consider using cryptocurrency in the next year. This represents a significant increase from the 12% of crypto holders reported in the last year.
What Else: Earlier this year, Mastercard partnered with Bakkt Holdings Inc BKKT to bring crypto rewards to users.
Fellow payments giant Visa Inc V has also begun to make moves in the crypto cards space, partnering with BlockFi to release a crypto rewards card for U.S. citizens.
Visa CEO Al Kelly stated that regardless of what the future hold for cryptocurrency, he was “smart enough” to make sure the company was “in the middle of” crypto today.
MA Price Action: Mastercard shares were down 1.86% at $343.18 Tuesday morning.
Photo by Ron McClenny on Unsplash.
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