Visa looks to “enable bitcoin purchases”

Payments mammoth Visa is working on ways to enable bitcoin purchases using Visa credentials, according to the company’s CEO Al Kelly.

Kelly explained the move last week on Fortune’s Leadership Next podcast: “We’re trying to do two things; one is enable the purchase of Bitcoin on Visa credentials, and then secondly work with some Bitcoin wallets to allow the Bitcoin to be translated into a fiat currency.”

He added that enabling the instant conversion of bitcoin into fiat would allow some 70 million merchants around the world to accept BTC as a payment method.

On top of this, Kelly said Visa is also working with fiat-backed digital currencies: “We see a strong potential for those to become a new payment vehicle,” and an “accelerant” in emerging markets.

Visa’s partnerships with platforms and wallet providers include BlockFi, Fold,, and recent addition First Boulevard, which was selected as a partner for its new crypto API program.

Kelly noted that small businesses have been “one of the losers” during the pandemic and that adding Bitcoin support could help them overcome the consequences of lost revenue due to global shutdowns.

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