Payments Giant Visa Partners With Circle to Integrate The USDC Stablecoin
In one of the biggest developments this year in 2020, credit card and payments giant Visa announced its partnership with Circle Internet Financial to integrate the Ethereum-based U.S. Dollar Coin (USDC), a USD-pegged stablecoin.
This will give USDC massive liquidity and access to Visa’s global payments network of 60 million merchants. As part of the partnership, Circle and Visa will work together and help the Visa card issuers to integrate the USDC software to their platform. This will make is absolutely easy for Visa card to send and receive USDC payments.
Moreover, as Forbes reported, this move will make it convenient for business to make international payments to other businesses that are supported by Visa. However, these USDC funds shall be first converted to the national currency for being able to spend at different merchant locations accepting Visa. Also, Visa has clarified that it won’t be offering any custodial services for the USDC stablecoin.
Speaking about the latest developments, Visa head of crypto Cuy Sheffield said: “This will be the first corporate card that will allow businesses to be able to spend a balance of USDC. And so we think that this will significantly increase the utility that USDC can have for Circle’s business clients.”
Sheffield further added: “We continue to think of Visa as a network of networks. Blockchain networks and stablecoins, like USDC, are just additional networks. So we think that there is a significant value that Visa can provide to our clients, enabling them to access them and enabling them to spend at our merchants.”
Visa has been flexing its muscles to expand its footprint in the crypto payments market. Last year, Visa invested $40 million in digital asset custodial service provider Anchorage that offers secure storage solutions to institutional players. Also, as part of its Fast Track Program, Visa has so far onboarded nearly 25 cryptocurrency wallet providers.
In another development, Visa is planning to release new credit cards in partnership with BlockFi that will offer cash back rewards to customers in Bitcoin. This will be the first attempt to rewards credit card users in Bitcoin instead of air miles or any other regular bonus points.
The "Bitcoin Rewards Visa Credit Card” shall be available by early 2021 with an annual fee of $200. For every purchase made, users will receive 1.5% back in the form of cashbacks. On every spend of $3000, cardholders will also receive $250 worth of BTC.
The new credit card from Visa and BlockFi shall be issued by Evolve Bank & Trust, reports Bloomberg. It "offers an easy entry point, enabling consumers to accrue Bitcoin through everyday spending," BlockFi said.