Mastercard unveils partnerships with major NFT sites

On June 9, Mastercard announced partnerships with seven of the world’s leading NFT and metaverse platforms. The payment processing giant hopes these new integrations will provide customers with an easy and secure way to start collecting digital assets.

The seven Web3 companies Mastercard disclosed in its press release include:

  • immutable X
  • Candy Digital
  • The sandpit
  • coinable
  • Spring
  • Handy port
  • MoonPay

Henceforth, customers visiting any of these platforms can use a Mastercard credit or debit card to make a purchase. Mastercard’s Executive VP Blockchain Products Raj Dhamodharan says customers need not worry about crypto conversions when using this new service.

Mastercard also said it would continue its partnership with the Coinbase NFT market. Raj Dhamodharan also announced Mastercard’s deal with Coinbase earlier this year.

Later in his press release, Dhamodharan said Mastercard researchers found that more customers want more “flexibility” when buying NFTs. According to research data from Mastercard, about 50 percent of respondents in 40 countries wanted more payment options for crypto assets.

With approximately 2.9 billion cardholders, Mastercard says the new features will help increase this “flexibility” in the crypto market. The company also suggested that these changes will have a “major impact” on the global NFT market.

Card competition in Web3 is heating up

Mastercard has recently taken many steps to position itself as the leader in Web3 payment processing. For example, Rarity Sniper recently discovered that Mastercard has filed 15 trademark applications related to NFTs and the metaverse. Mastercard has also invested heavily in many metaverse-related startups.

In addition, Mastercard announced in February that it is offering “crypto advisory services” in its Data & Services division. It looks like this new division will help clients develop actionable strategies to take advantage of blockchain innovations like NFTs.

Mastercard also partners with many crypto companies to offer crypto reward cards. For example, New York-based exchange Gemini recently unveiled its Mastercard credit card and crypto lending platform Nexo has a Mastercard debit card.

While Mastercard has aggressively expanded its Web3 offering, that doesn’t mean there isn’t competition. No doubt Visa has accepted even more cryptocurrency in recent years.

Ironically, Coinbase chose Visa for its official crypto-backed debit card. Crypto.com fans should know that Visa is responsible for the Singapore-based exchange’s metal debit cards. Visa also partnered with lending site BlockFi on the world’s first crypto rewards credit card.

In addition to working with major crypto companies, Visa now has an NFT-focused division interested in partnering with digital artists. Visa also made headlines when it bought CryptoPunk #7610 for $150,000.

In addition to Mastercard and Visa, American Express seems interested in developing its presence in the metaverse. More recently, the banking and card issuer Capital One has filed Web3 patents with the USPTO.

As crypto and Web3 gain wider adoption, it could change the way card companies think about payment processing.

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