Mastercard to offer crypto on payment network

Soon, within Mastercard’s payment network, merchants will be able to accept crypto tokens and offer crypto rewards.


Mastercard partners with Bakkt

According to a report from CNBC financial services firm Mastercard will announce that its thousands of banks and millions of retailers will soon be able to accept crypto. To do this, Mastercard has partnered with Bakkt, a digital asset company. It will provide custody services to the merchants and institutions that sign up.

Bakkt was launched in 2018 as a Bitcoin custodian, like Coinbase Custody or Anchorage. In March, Bakkt launched its crypto wallet and Bakkt app. The Bakkt app allows consumers to use Bitcoin as a means of payment and collect loyalty points and rewards from several participating companies, including Starbucks.

This month, Bakkt started trading on the Nasdaq. It closed its first day at $8.76, a whopping 6.41% lower than its opening price of $9.41. Today it trades against $12.28 per share.

The Mastercard deal will bring a plethora of crypto services to the Mastercard payment network. These include Bitcoin wallets, the ability to earn crypto rewards on crypto credit cards, and participation in select airline or hotel loyalty programs where rewards can be converted into Bitcoins.

Growing institutional interest in crypto is the driving force behind the latest initiative. Sherry Haymond, Mastercard’s executive vice president of digital partnerships, said.


Mastercard Tracks Bitcoin ETFs

The news comes after a week of explosive price performance in the global crypto market. Last Wednesday, market leader Bitcoin set a new all-time high of $66,930. The next day, Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, also set a new record at $4,366.

Bitcoin Reaches New All Time High – Source: Tradingview

Much of the recent buzz around crypto has been due to the launch of Proshares’ Bitcoin futures ETF. This is the first regulated investment tool in the US that allows investors to gain exposure to Bitcoin without buying it directly.

The launch of ProShares was followed on Friday with the announcement that the SEC had also approved Valkyrie’s Bitcoin Futures ETF filing.

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