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Mastercard Launches Global Program to Help Cryptocurrency Startups Scale Their Innovations

Payments giant Mastercard has launched a new, global program for cryptocurrency startups. Seven crypto companies have already joined the program. Together with Mastercard, they will work to “expand and accelerate innovation around digital asset technology and make it safer and easier for people and institutions to buy, spend and hold cryptocurrencies and digital assets.”

Mastercard’s New Crypto Program

Mastercard announced Tuesday “a new Start Path global startup engagement program dedicated to supporting fast-growing digital assets, blockchain and cryptocurrency companies.”

Seven startups have already joined the program. They will work with Mastercard “to expand and accelerate innovation around digital asset technology and make it safer and easier for people and institutions to buy, spend and hold cryptocurrencies and digital assets,” the announcement details.

The startups include GK8, Mintable, Stacs, and Supraoracles. GK8 (Israel) is a self-managed end-to-end institutional crypto custody platform. Mintable (Singapore) is a non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace, Stacs (Singapore) provides a blockchain infrastructure for the financial industry, and Supraoracles (Switzerland) is a blockchain oracle.

The other companies that have joined the program are Taurus, Uphold, and Domain Money. Taurus (Switzerland) provides enterprise-grade infrastructure to manage any digital assets, including crypto assets, digital currencies and tokenized assets covering issuance, custody, asset servicing and trading. Uphold (USA) is a crypto investment and payment service provider for consumers and businesses, and Domain Money (USA) looks to build an investment platform to bridge the gap between digital assets and traditional finance for retail investors.

The Start Path program has helped more than 250 startups since 2014, the announcement notes. The program now provides crypto startups access to Mastercard’s “latest tools and solutions to help these companies scale their innovations and cutting-edge technologies.”

Mastercard explained: “These startups use the program to connect with our ecosystem of banks, merchants, partners and digital players across the globe to deliver new solutions.”

Jess Turner, executive vice president of New Digital Infrastructure and Fintech, commented that “Mastercard has been engaging with the digital currency ecosystem since 2015,” elaborating:

As a leading technology player, we believe we can play a key role in digital assets, helping to shape the industry, and provide consumer protections and security. Part of our role is to forge the future of cryptocurrency, and we’re doing that by bridging mainstream financial principles with digital assets innovations.

Last week, Mastercard announced an enhancement to its card program for cryptocurrency wallets and exchanges, with the aim to make it “simpler for partners to convert cryptocurrency to traditional fiat currency.”

What do you think about Mastercard’s new program for crypto startups? Let us know in the comments section below.

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