Mastercard CEO Expounds on the Company’s Plans to Accept Cryptocurrency

Michael Miebach, the CEO of Mastercard, recently shed light on how Mastercard will include crypto in its network. 

Embracing CBDCs

In an interview with Bloomberg’s Emily Chang, the CEO stated that the company would enable its clients to transact using Bahamas digital currency Sand Dollar. 

The partnership offspring will enable Bahamas citizens to pay for services in Mastercard-accepted places. 

Mastercard and Island Pay previously launched the first-ever global central bank digital currency linked card. Nevertheless, Mr. Miebach said the financial entity is still looking into which it can include private-backed stablecoins in its network.

When asked about Bitcoin, he said due to such cryptos’ volatile pricing; it will be difficult for Mastercard to adopt non-asset-backed digital coins. According to Bloomberg, when the corporation mentioned they would accept crypto payments in the future, it led to a price upsurge of several cryptocurrencies.

However, Mr. Miebach said that the focus on cryptocurrency adoption at the moment lies entirely on country-backed stablecoins and, later on, private-backed digital assets.

Mastercard Stresses the Importance of Digital Currencies

According to the Mastercard operations chief, the COVID-19 pandemic wiped several outdoor activities and forced people to make transactions online. Day-to-day activities involving traveling, shopping, movie screenings, and sports got halted for some time as several governments imposed restrictions. 

In the interview, Miebach gave an example of the NFL SuperBowl, a sporting event where millions expressed interest but were not allowed inside the stadium. Whether people will go back to handling physical fiat currencies when restrictions are lifted, The CEO said, “People want to go out…..Terms of easy online checkout will stay.” 

The Mastercard CEO is optimistic that online payment will continue, and the financial company is urging several countries to adopt centralized digital currencies like the Bahamas Sand Dollar. He continued to say the plan to enable customers to use Sand Dollars in settlements is not an experiment. Still, they have created a sandbox for other banks to try out the stablecoin payment services.

The Fear of using Decentralized Crypto

As it stands, online crypto payment services are on the rise, with companies such as PrivateFly accepting settlements for tickets in BTC. Nonetheless, financial institutions and businesses are still wary of the use of non-asset-backed cryptocurrencies like BTC. The main reason for this fear, according to CEO Miebach, is that such digital coins have prices that go up and down regularly. 

He explained how engaging in BTC might make buying something as familiar as pizza difficult by stating, “Imagine you buy a pizza and the pizza costs ten units of a free-floating cryptocurrency, and the price within minutes fluctuates significantly up and down. Your pizza could be worth forty dollars or five dollars, and from a payment perspective, that’s a problem.”

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