As we delve into partnerships at The Fintech Times, it is impossible not to look at the affect crypto and blockchain have had on the financial space, and the ensuing partnerships that have taken place as a result. One of the most notable companies taking part in these partnerships is Crypto.com. By partnering with the NYSE and Visa, Crypto.com has brought these companies into the modern, digital era, by innovating to make crypto a viable global payment service and bring awareness to blockchain and how it can be used.
Old investing meets New
Earlier this year, The First Trade, a series of collectibles that commemorate the very first time six major companies were traded publicly, was made known to the public by the NYSE following its partnership with Crypto.com. The First Trade is the exact moment a company becomes public, creating an opportunity for others to share in its success. So the six collectible NFTs announced were Spotify, Unity, Snowflake, Roblox, DoorDash, and Coupang, and marked down their First Trade on the NYSE. Stacey Cunningham, President of the NYSE, suggested there could be more on the way, though to date, there have not been any.
The NYSE said on Twitter, “We’re taking the ‘First Trade Slips’ for six NYSE listings and minting them as non-fungible tokens on the blockchain.”
Stacey Cunningham expressed her delight with the launch of the NYSE non-fungible tokens on LinkedIn saying, “At the NYSE, we love to celebrate moments. It seems fitting to launch our own NYSE First Trade NFTs as a new, fun way to mark the moment a company joins the NYSE.
“Our first class of NYSE NFTs celebrates the First Trades of these notable listings: Spotify, which executed the first ever Direct Listing, Snowflake, Unity, DoorDash, Roblox and Coupang, the largest US IPO so far this year!”
Crypto.com Chief Marketing Officer Steve Kalifowitz told CoinDesk the crypto app was not paying the NYSE to mint NFTs on its weeks-old platform. “They reached out to us,” he said in a Twitter DM. It is important to note that the NFTs are not for sale, rather they have been “minted”. When this was announced in April it was unclear what the motive behind this decision was, as Crypto.com had announced its new collaborators that included the likes of Snoop Dogg, Boy George and more. With this much hype and anticipation surrounding Crypto.com and its affiliates, it was unclear why the NYSE did not want to sell these NFTs. The exchange justified itself by saying:
6/6: Innovation is what we do at the NYSE. We were the first with Direct Listings and at the forefront of the emergence of SPACs.
Now we want to help drive this new wave of NFT innovation.
— NYSE 🏛 (@NYSE) April 12, 2021
Paytech enabling crypto payments
Crypto.com has announced many partnerships over the past year to bring awareness to digital currencies, but when looking at the effect of these, one of the most notable is its global partnership with Visa.
Having partnered the Metropolitan Commercial Bank in the US, Crypto.com has been able to roll out a Visa Card for its consumers for a while, however, with the announcement that took place earlier this year, the crypto platform is planning to accelerate the adoption of crypto payment solutions around the world by expanding the reach of its Visa Card. In addition, Crypto.com is announcing plans to roll out fiat lending with crypto collateral via the Crypto.com Visa Card.
The Crypto.com Visa Card is already the largest Visa card program of its kind, currently available in the US, Canada, 31 countries in Europe and in APAC. Further expanding the reach of the card and enriching its features were key pillars of the partnership. Having been granted Visa principal membership, Crypto.com began direct-issuance of the Crypto.com Visa Card in Australia, allowing Crypto.com to have a direct relationship with cardholders. When the partnership was announced, Crypto.com started implementing its plans to scale the Crypto.com Visa Card to many more markets around the world—including new markets and new customer segments that Crypto.com does not currently service.
Kris Marszalek, Co-founder and CEO of Crypto.com said, “Having been a Visa partner for several years, we’re excited to deepen that relationship with a slew of world-firsts. Signing the global partnership with Visa and becoming a principal member with the world’s leader in digital payments affirms our commitment to accelerate the world’s transition to cryptocurrency. I’m also excited to deepen our relationship with our customers via direct-issuance of cards around the world and roll-out Spending Power — allowing them to access the value of their crypto today.”
Cuy Sheffield, head of Crypto at Visa said, “Digital currencies have the potential to extend the value of digital payments to a greater number of people and places—and we’re eager to work with companies bringing this vision to life. Through our partnership with Crypto.com, one of the largest Visa card programs connected to a crypto exchange available today, we are making it quicker and easier for people to spend digital currency worldwide.”
Visa’s dive into the crypto world has gone from strength to strength in the last few months as it now has 50 active partnerships, up from 35 just four months ago, according to The Block. That means 50 crypto firms have launched or are set to launch debit and credit cards with the payments technology giant.
Other notable partnerships include Coinbase, Binance. These firms offer Visa-linked debit cards, which help their customers to spend cryptocurrencies at Visa’s global network of 70 million merchants. BlockFi, on the other hand, offers a Visa credit card that allows customers to spend fiat and get rewards in crypto.
Visa has said more than $1 billion has been spent via its crypto-linked cards in the first six months of 2021.
“We’ve seen a lot of momentum since we first set out on this journey,” Sheffield told The Block. “As we look to the future, cryptocurrency and stablecoins are on track to become an important part of the broader digital transformation of financial services, and we’re excited to help shape and support that development.”