Visa, the payments company, has refuted reports suggesting that it is scaling back its cryptocurrency initiatives due to the current bear market.
According to Cuy Sheffield, the Head of Crypto at Visa, the Reuters article claiming that both Visa and Mastercard were slowing down their efforts in the crypto space is incorrect in regards to Visa. Sheffield took to Twitter on Tuesday to clarify Visa’s stance on cryptocurrencies.
Despite the obstacles and unpredictability in the cryptocurrency industry, Cuy Sheffield stated that Visa recognizes the potential of fiat-backed digital currencies running on public blockchains to contribute significantly to the payments ecosystem. Although Visa has been involved in the crypto space for some time, progress has been sluggish recently, exemplified by the termination of its global credit card partnerships with collapsed crypto exchange FTX in November 2022.
Visa had previously revealed its intentions to introduce cards to 40 additional nations as part of a “long-term global partnership” with FTX. However, Visa canceled the collaboration when the cryptocurrency company collapsed. FTX’s bankruptcy was widely publicized and is now being probed for criminal mismanagement. According to prosecutors, the firm combined client funds, and its former CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried, is now accused of 12 criminal charges.
In October, Visa submitted new trademark applications that suggested its potential involvement in developing a cryptocurrency wallet and a product related to the metaverse. Crypto wallets, like MetaMask or Phantom, allow users to store digital assets such as Bitcoin or Ethereum and perform transactions. On the other hand, the metaverse pertains to a virtual world shared online that has become a significant interest for various fintech and cryptocurrency companies.