Mastercard in crypto drive

Mastercard is looking to make it easier for consumers to buy, spend and hold cryptocurrencies.

Startups focused on crypto and digital assets will now be able to join Mastercard’s Start Path program, which gives fledgling companies access to the network’s executives and technology to help them grow, Mastercard said Tuesday in a statement.

Seven crypto-focused startups have joined the program so far, including Uphold and Domain Money, which are building investment platforms for digital assets.

“We believe we can play a key role in digital assets, helping to shape the industry, and provide consumer protections and security,” Jess Turner, Mastercard’s executive vice president of new digital infrastructure and fintech, said in the statement. “Part of our role is to forge the future of cryptocurrency.”

Payments giants including Visa Inc. and PayPal Holdings Inc. have sought to take advantage of the frenzy in cryptocurrencies in recent months.

Visa said earlier this month that cardholders have spent more than $1 billion on crypto-linked cards in the first six months of 2021.

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Mastercard in crypto drive