Visa is introducing new advisory and consultancy services to assist its customers in navigating the cryptocurrency sector. Visa has since acknowledged UMB, an American bank, as a client which is already utilising its new advisory services.
The world-renowned payments processor announced this past Wednesday that its crypto-advisory service, contained inside its respective consulting and analytics department, will provide information and guidance to numerous financial institutions, firms, retailers, and various other businesses on topics ranging from implementing cryptocurrency-oriented features to examining NFTs.
Visa to cash in on crypto craze?
The initiative is Visa's newest attempt to expand its presence in the cryptocurrency market and industry. As per Nikola Plecas, Visa's European cryptocurrency head, the organization handled $3.5 billion in digital currency transactions via its cryptocurrency-connected card schemes from October 1st, 2020 to September 30th, 2021.
Nikola went on to say that a sizable portion of large exchanges worldwide have millions or perhaps even tens of millions of active users. He then added that Visa allows customers to spend their cryptocurrencies at more than 80 million merchants. Visa's Cuy Sheffield also called cryptocurrencies &lsquocool' during a recent conference.
The business is also working on solutions for stablecoins, which are virtual tokens pegged to the value of fiat currencies, generally the dollar. Some of the more notable stablecoins include but are not limited to USDT, BUSD, DAI, and USDC. Efforts concerning central bank digital currencies are also reportedly being worked upon.
What's the endgame?
Visa expects that its new consulting services will hopefully aid in the growing mainstream acceptance of cryptocurrencies. The credit card company, like major competitor Mastercard, views cryptocurrencies as a crucial growth prospect as it goes beyond card-based transactions.
Moreover, leading payment networks have experienced greater competition from a slew of new financial companies and businesses within the past few years. Emerging developments like open banking, which intends to provide competing fintechs access to customer bank information as well as payment capabilities, threaten to destabilise their business model.
Meanwhile, huge Internet businesses are putting pressure on Visa. Amazon announced last month that it will no longer accept Visa credit cards in the United Kingdom owing to the company's &lsquoexceedingly high costs'. Additionally, in both Singapore and Australia, the e-commerce behemoth has taken similar action against Visa.
Nonetheless, the future looks promising. According to a recent Visa poll, 94% of Americans are already aware of cryptocurrencies, and nearly one-third admitted to having used the digital assets as either a medium of exchange or an investment.
For Visa, the growing popularity surrounding cryptocurrencies hence represents a significant new sector and massive growth potential, according to Nikola. He concluded that the company shall therefore continue to focus on building this side of the organization even more for the foreseeable future.