Visa's Partnership with Solana and USDC for Enhanced Cross-Border Payments
Visa is making deeper inroads into the realm of cryptocurrency with the aim of expediting cross-border payment transactions. The California-based company has expanded its capabilities for settling transactions involving stablecoins by integrating Circle's USDC stablecoin with the high-performance Solana blockchain. Visa proudly asserts its pioneering role among major financial institutions in harnessing the Solana network for large-scale settlements.
This development has sparked a nearly 2% increase in the value of SOL, Solana's native cryptocurrency, while Bitcoin (BTC) and the broader Bitsday Market Index (BMI) have experienced slight declines.
Visa has taken further steps by launching pilot programs in collaboration with merchant acquirers Worldpay and Nuvei, both of which facilitate debit and credit card payments for global businesses. These programs now afford their clients the option to opt for USDC stablecoin settlements instead of conventional fiat currencies.
Visa's journey into the realm of cryptocurrencies began in 2021 when it initiated testing of USDC for treasury operations. The company conducted a pilot program in partnership with the cryptocurrency exchange Crypto.com, utilizing the Ethereum blockchain to settle cross-border payments made with Crypto.com Visa cards.
Cuy Sheffield, Visa's head of crypto, remarked, "By leveraging stablecoins like USDC and global blockchain networks such as Solana and Ethereum, we are contributing to the acceleration of cross-border settlements, offering our clients a contemporary solution for seamless fund transfers to and from Visa's treasury."
8/ Visa can now settle these payments to WorldPay in USDC, enabling WorldPay to more flexibly manage their own treasury infrastructure and route the USDC directly to their merchants with less worry about wire cut off times and bank holidays— Cuy Sheffield (@cuysheffield) September 5, 2023
This development marks yet another significant stride by traditional financial institutions embracing blockchain technology. Research firm Bernstein has projected that the stablecoin market could potentially reach a total valuation of $2.8 trillion within the next five years, as global financial and consumer platforms increasingly leverage these tokens on public blockchains to facilitate value exchange within their ecosystems.
Stablecoins, a subset of cryptocurrencies with values pegged to external assets, primarily the U.S. dollar, are witnessing growing adoption, particularly for remittances and savings purposes in developing regions. In a recent development, fintech company PayPal introduced its stablecoin, PYUSD, on the Ethereum blockchain.