Mastercard Teams Up with Bakkt to Take Crypto Payments To All Consumers

Mastercard Teams Up with Bakkt to Take Crypto Payments To All Consumers

Mastercard and crypto firm Bakkt Holdings on 25 October said they have partnered to enable cryptocurrency card payments. The companies said the partnership will make it easier for banks, financial-technology firms and merchants to offer and accept crypto payments. Banks and other financial institutions that issue cards through Mastercard will be able to issue cryptocurrency debit or credit cards that let people make payments and earn rewards in bitcoin.

Bakkt’s stock, which publicly listed on the NYSE on October 18, skyrocketed in Monday’s session and briefly triggered a halt. With momentum already behind it, Bakkt’s announcement of a separate deal with Fiserv (FISV) sent its shares up by a staggering 175% intraday.

“We want to provide consumer choice. We want to be able to provide the availability to use crypto currency in an everyday transaction,” Gavin Michael, Bakkt’s CEO told Yahoo Finance at the All Markets Summit on Monday.

With the Mastercard partnership, companies will also be able to offer crypto as part of their loyalty reward programs backed by Bakkt. For instance, hotels or restaurants who offer points for freebies or other perks could also offer customers the option to convert the points into cryptocurrency of their choosing.

The partnership with Mastercard comes after Bakkt partnered with Google to allow its users to purchase goods and services using Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies through the Google Pay wallet and payment system.

Bakkt, which started as a cryptocurrency exchange for institutional investors, has moved into the consumer space with an app aimed at being a tool to let people manage their digital assets — including cryptocurrencies – similar to Venmo. Bakkt projects the app will amass more than 30 million users in five years.

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