Leading payments giant Mastercard is actively exploring collaboration opportunities with self-custody wallet firms such as MetaMask and Ledger, as revealed in a Web3 strategy workshop report obtained by CoinDesk.
Mastercard emphasised that incorporating a payments card into wallet providers’ offerings can significantly boost the number of active users. The payment card not only helps in building user loyalty but also opens up additional revenue streams. Moreover, it provides cardholders with a seamless opportunity to spend their cryptocurrency balances in a frictionless manner.
Wallet firms often face substantial resource demands when introducing a card in a new region. In response, Mastercard, along with its issuance partners, aims to assist these wallet firms in meeting their resource demands, facilitating the smooth launch of cards in different regions.
Mastercard has been active in pursuing partnerships within the Web3 space and offering products within the Web3 market. These include the Mastercard Multi-Token Network, Crypto Credential, CBDC Partner Program, and new card programs that bridge the gap between Web2 and Web3 technologies. The company is also exploring new models for global issuance, including using stablecoins for on-chain settlement and leveraging inexpensive fast chains.
Despite challenging market conditions and regulatory uncertainties, major credit card networks like Mastercard and Visa are forging ahead with their crypto initiatives. Mastercard’s acquisition of CipherTrace in 2021 positioned the company to provide blockchain analytics and monitoring services, ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements.
Ensuring Consumer Protection and Competition:
Mastercard plans to release a set of franchise standards for partner firms, aiming to ensure consumer protection, foster price competition, and meet transaction monitoring requirements. This strategic move aligns with the company’s commitment to maintaining high standards in the digital assets space.
Once the proposed franchise standards are validated, Mastercard envisions issuing a card targeting the European Union or the United Kingdom as the initial market. The company recognizes users’ demand for a simple solution—seamless transactions without the need for pre-funding, spending crypto, or dealing with tax complexities.
Industry Trends and Collaborative Efforts
Despite the challenges posed by crypto regulatory frameworks, credit card networks like Mastercard and Visa are actively seeking ways to enhance their digital and crypto initiatives. These initiatives include the tokenization of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) on different blockchains, as demonstrated in Mastercard’s involvement in a Reserve Bank of Australia digital currency project.