Payments network giant MasterCard has partnered with Bakkt to offer MasterCard’s network of merchants, banks, and fintech companies the ability to buy, sell and hold cryptocurrencies. MasterCard is calling this new offering, Crypto-as-a-Service and has decided to offer digital assets to its network of users to give them more variety when it comes to money and payments.
MasterCard will offer crypto services in partnership with Bakkt.
Sherri Haymond, executive vice president, Digital Partnerships at Mastercard, said, “they are committed to offering a wide range of payment solutions that deliver more choice, value, and impact every day.” “Together with Bakkt and grounded by our principled approach to innovation, we’ll not only empower our partners to offer a dynamic mix of digital assets options but also deliver differentiated and relevant consumer experiences,” she added. In addition to giving their network the ability to buy, sell, and hold bitcoin, MasterCard will allow its users to reap crypto rewards, exchange their existing reward points for the digital currencies that MasterCard will support through its custodian Bakkt, and will let users obtain digital currency debit and credit cards.
Bakkt’s shares jumped 77% in value following the announcement.
Cryptocurrencies have gained a lot of mainstream exposure this year. According to the Bakkt U.S. Consumer Crypto Survey of 2,000 U.S. Consumers, 48% of respondents reported purchasing bitcoin in the first half of 2021; and according to the Mastercard New Payments Index, 77% of millennials stated that they are interested in learning more about digital currency, with 75% saying that they would use digital currency if they understood it better. Bakkt, who recently went public on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol $BKKT, jumped 77% in value, from $9.90 to $16.20, upon announcing their partnership with MasterCard.