- The Visa (NYSE:) CEO says central bank currencies and stablecoins could have an “important role” in the payments space.
- The world’s largest credit card company has many crypto initiatives in place, from the Universal Payment Channel (UPC) initiative to programmable payments for stablecoins.
- Visa seeks to maintain its stranglehold on the payments industry by staying ahead of the curve on the blockchain.
Visa, the world’s largest credit card company, believes that crypto assets will have a future in the payment space.
Speaking at the company’s annual shareholder call, outgoing CEO Alfred Kelly said that stablecoins and central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) will have an “important role” in the payments space.
Kelly, who was due to leave Visa on February 1, said the company has “a number of initiatives underway” in the blockchain space.
“It is very early days, but we still believe that stablecoins and central bank digital currencies have the potential to play a meaningful role in the payments space,” Kelly explained.
Visa has been actively exploring the potential of blockchain technology and cryptocurrency in the field of payments. The company has invested in several crypto funds and companies.
“We have an immaterial amount of investments in crypto funds and companies as we seek to invest in the payments system,” Kelly said.
Despite the 2022 bear market, Kelly claimed that Visa’s balance sheet has not been hurt by its cryptocurrency investments.
We have not experienced credit losses associated with these failures […] In everything we do, please know that we are very focused on maintaining the integrity of the Visa payment system, the payment system in general, and of course our trusted brand reputation.”
Visa is exploring Blockchain technology to maintain a grip on payments
To maintain its dominance in the payments industry in the future, Visa is looking into the blockchain.
In September 2021, Visa began work on a blockchain interoperability project called the Universal Payment Channel (UPC) Initiative. The UPC aims to create a “web of networks” for private stablecoins and central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) to flow through various payment channels.
Furthermore, Visa is improving self-custody. In December, the company released a technical paper on programmable payments for self-booking wallets.
Visa is the world’s largest credit card company, with more than three billion Visa-branded cards in circulation. Its card is the world’s most accepted credit card brand.
on the flip side
- Visa’s forays into blockchain technology are still in their infancy. It is unclear how they will affect the company or the technology.
Why should you bother
As the largest player in the credit card industry, Visa’s interest in blockchain technology and cryptocurrency is bullish for cryptocurrency. It’s also a sign that organizations believe in the underlying technology.