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Mastercard (MA) adds five start-ups to crypto programme

By William Hoffman

14:32, 9 December 2021

Top-down view of a Mastercard credit card, smartphone, cup of coffee and a plant on a table
Ava Labs, Envel, Kash, LVL and NiftyKey have joined the scheme – Photo: Mastercard

Five start-ups are joining Mastercard’s crypto engagement programme as consumer awareness and interest in digital currencies continues to grow.

The start-ups focus on NFT-based rewards schemes, crypto-based banking programmes and smart contracts using blockchain, according to a company press release.

“The past year has seen incredible momentum in the world of crypto assets, from the explosion of NFTs to the piloting of central bank digital currencies in countries across the world,” Jess Turner, executive vice president of new digital infrastructure and fintech at Mastercard, said in the release. “As we look to what’s next, it’s all about finding new use cases and problems blockchain technology can solve for now and in the future.”

Five start-ups

The start-ups joining the platform are Ava Labs, Envel, Kash, LVL and NiftyKey.

Ava Labs runs the smart contract platform Avalanche, which allows users to develop solutions for decentralised finance and digital collectibles.

Envel is looking to integrate USDC stablecoin and blockchain technology into its artificial intelligence banking app, which automatically budgets, makes payments, collects savings and makes investments.

Kash is exploring ways to use stablecoins to help users on its peer-to-peer platform protect against inflation and build wealth with high-interest savings accounts.


0.11 Price
+2.300% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.0012872


58,609.00 Price
+1.810% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 106.00


374.35 Price
+3.500% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 2.50


3,159.85 Price
+1.570% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 6.00

LVL is partnering with Mastercard to give its users a card they can use to pay for goods and services using a Bitcoin banking app.

NiftyKey is a crypto rewards platform that gives users NFT-based benefits for spending rather than cashback or mileage travel points, as other credit card programmes might.

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Mastercard is far from the only payments processor exploring the possibilities of digital currencies.

Earlier this week, Visa announced a new crypto advisory service for the financial services and bank clients it works with.

Digital payments company Square created a new holding company called Block earlier this month that will allow CEO Jack Dorsey to focus more on his blockchain and cryptocurrency ambitions.

Read more: Visa (V) launches crypto advisory service for banks

Markets in this article

Mastercard Inc (Extended Hours)
443.05 USD
2.69 +0.620%
Block Inc (Extended Hours)
68.81 USD
2.24 +3.370%
Visa Inc (Extended Hours)
266.05 USD
3 +1.150%

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The difference between trading assets and CFDs
The main difference between CFD trading and trading assets, such as commodities and stocks, is that you don’t own the underlying asset when you trade on a CFD.
You can still benefit if the market moves in your favour, or make a loss if it moves against you. However, with traditional trading you enter a contract to exchange the legal ownership of the individual shares or the commodities for money, and you own this until you sell it again.
CFDs are leveraged products, which means that you only need to deposit a percentage of the full value of the CFD trade in order to open a position. But with traditional trading, you buy the assets for the full amount. In the UK, there is no stamp duty on CFD trading, but there is when you buy stocks, for example.
CFDs attract overnight costs to hold the trades (unless you use 1-1 leverage), which makes them more suited to short-term trading opportunities. Stocks and commodities are more normally bought and held for longer. You might also pay a broker commission or fees when buying and selling assets direct and you’d need somewhere to store them safely.
Capital Com is an execution-only service provider. The material provided in this article is for information purposes only and should not be understood as investment advice. Any opinion that may be provided on this page does not constitute a recommendation by Capital Com or its agents and has not been prepared in accordance with the legal requirements designed to promote investment research independence. While the information in this communication, or on which this communication is based, has been obtained from sources that believes to be reliable and accurate, it has not undergone independent verification. No representation or warranty, whether expressed or implied, is made as to the accuracy or completeness of any information obtained from third parties. If you rely on the information on this page, then you do so entirely at your own risk.

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