Australian stablecoin wallet Stables (formerly tiiik) announces two new partnerships as it progresses its payments platform. It first announced a partnership with Marqeta, the global modern card issuing platform, to power its Mastercard prepaid card. A day later, Stables announced how its Mastercard collaboration was being taken one step further.
Stables is a digital wallet based in Sydney, Australia. It allows users to spend, send and earn stablecoins, all on one balance. With Marqeta’s dynamic spend controls and Just-in-Time funding capabilities, Stables’ customers will be able to convert stablecoins into fiat. They will then be able to spend wherever Mastercard cards are accepted online and in-store globally.
Powering Stables’ cards
Marqeta’s 2022 Consumer Money Movement survey found that 30 per cent of Australians surveyed said they owned cryptocurrency. Furthermore, 93 per cent of consumers surveyed globally saying they held it like an asset. There’s a significant appetite for consumers to do more with their holdings. Eighty-two per cent of consumers surveyed globally said they would be interested if their cryptocurrency exchange offered them a debit card where they could spend cryptocurrency like dollars.
According to the survey, Australian consumers were more likely to use mobile wallets, cryptocurrency and other digital payment options compared to consumers in the US and UK. Australia has been investing in contactless payments since well before the pandemic. Post-pandemic, it has established itself as a global leader in accelerating digital change.
“Australia has historically been at the forefront of consumer adoption for new technologies, and crypto payments are a prime example of the next wave of innovation that’s accelerating in the APAC region,” said Duncan Currie, country manager for Australia and New Zealand, Marqeta. “We’re proud to partner with Stables and Mastercard to enable them to create more flexible payment options for their customers with our APIs.”
With Marqeta’s Just-in-Time Funding feature, Stables is enabled to create card products that users can leverage from their stablecoin wallet. This makes authorisation decisions at the point of sale based on a user’s available stablecoin balance and funding transactions in fiat currency. Marqeta’s open APIs and dynamic spend controls allow customers like Stables to build customisable experiences. They can be integrated with other apps and offer visibility and transparency through real-time notifications and monitoring powered by webhooks.
“Stables is committed to expanding what’s possible with stablecoins, giving people more flexibility and choice in their payments habits,” said Stables co-founder and CEO Erez Rachamim. “With increasing demand for digital assets, we’re thrilled to work with Marqeta to develop a card that enables more seamless spending on everyday items.”
Bolstering Stables’ APAC offering
Physical card purchases aren’t the only area being improved. Stables is also improving its digital wallet offering with Mastercard. Stables will partner with a third party to allow customers to save and spend USDC. This will then be converted to fiat and settled on Mastercard’s network. The card will be accessible through the Stables digital app via mobile wallets, enabled for everyday spending.
Stables co-founder and CEO Erez Rachamim says the introduction of stablecoin payments for everyday purchases marks a significant step in the maturity of cryptocurrency in the APAC market.
“As adoption for digital assets increases across the globe, people are requiring simple and accessible means to get utility from their digital assets in the real world. We’re thrilled to be collaborating with Mastercard. It will allow for our customers to access its global network to spend. All the while, we will progress on our journey to transform digital asset payment offerings available.”
The objective of this innovative payment system is in line with the principles we share with Mastercard of stability, regulatory compliance, and consumer protection. Stables is expanding what’s possible with stablecoins to give people even greater choice and flexibility in how they transact,” Rachamim said.
Addressing a need for digital currency spending
Mastercard found 55 per cent of APAC consumers would feel more confident investing in crypto or digital currencies that are issued or backed by a reputable organisation. Stables is addressing the need for digital assets holders that have options to spend on everyday items. This is in addition to those spending at online merchants seamlessly, all using stablecoins.
“Customers spend as they usually would using stablecoins. Transactions are then settled by Stables’ payment gateway enabling real-time transactions using USDC. Conversion and settlement occur behind the scenes, secured with ISO and SOC2 certified digital asset custody technology provider Fireblocks. In turn, this enables users to checkout as they normally would with a debit card,” Rachamim added.
Stables’ co-founder and chief technology officer Tony Tao, who has extensive background in building payment systems from the ground up at Zip and Site Minder, adds: “It’s an amazing opportunity for us to extend our market expertise and gain recognition in this space. This solution comes at a time when four out of five customers who hold digital assets have expressed a desire to spend their digital assets in the physical world.”
Kallan Hogan, vice president of business development and head of fintech, Australasia, Mastercard said: “Mastercard is committed to powering innovative payment solutions that give cardholders the freedom to spend their assets where, how, and when they want. Stables is building a solution for the Web3 sector leveraging Mastercard’s global network and cyber and intelligence tools. This includes CipherTrace and Ekata, with trust and security at the core.”