Visa accelerates blockchain capabilities with Ternio
Ternio has boarded Visa’s Fast Track programme as a cryptocurrency focused enablement partner, in the latest move from the payments giant to increase its foothold in blockchain finance.
Ternio is a US-based fintech platform, whose technology allows holders of BlockCard, its flagship product issued with Visa, to access the value of their digital wallets in real time. BlockCard gives holders a more immediate way to spend their cryptocurrency as fiat currency - the money issued and guaranteed by governments, such as US dollars - without the extra step of cashing out through a third-party exchange.
It also white-labels the cards, most prominently teaming with Litecoin. The US dollar value, for example, of users’ Litecoin can be spent at any of the roughly 61 million merchants where Visa is accepted globally.
Partnering with Ternio will give Visa greater interoperability between legacy finance and blockchain. It aims to offer fintech startups and other businesses swift and concrete solutions to bridge the gap between the two worlds.
Both Ternio’s customers and Visa’s fintech partners stand to benefit, says Ternio CEO and co-founder Daniel Gouldman: “We're thrilled to deepen our partnership with Visa to further drive interoperability between blockchain and legacy financial systems. By becoming part of Visa's FastTrack program, Ternio will be able to further accelerate and scale our existing Visa card programs while simultaneously offering a suite of additional services.”
Terry Angelos, Visa's Global Head of Fintech, says the move will “help Fast Track companies focused on digital currencies to quickly and easily access Visa's platform and its scale”.
Visa’s blockchain ambitions
Partnering with Ternio is the latest “stepping stone” in Visa’s evolving blockchain ambitions, says Angelos.
Recently he confirmed that Visa has a “number of groups that are either building products that are based on blockchain technology or engaging with clients who are involved in the crypto industry”.
Earlier this year the payments giant also filed a US patent application for a new process th at would allow central banks to directly issue fiat currency as a new digital currency.
The proposed technology lays out a system for one-to-one translation from physical to digital currency, down to denomination and serial numbers. It would be managed by a “central entity computer”, which generates and tracks digital currency, while removing its physical ‘counterpart’ from circulation.
We reported earlier this week that trials for a similar system are continuing in China, with the aim of phasing out physical yuan currency in favour of a Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP).
NFT Marketplace Rarible Raises US$14.2m
Alongside the funding announcement, Rarible has shared that they’ve officially partnered with NBA Top Shot maker Dapper Labs to bring their NFT marketplace to Dapper’s Flow blockchain. Dapper Labs has begun building out a wider coalition of NFT platforms on its proprietary blockchain which is more energy-efficient and less costly than transactions on the Ethereum network.
“To mark this next phase, we are also proud to enter an official partnership with Flow. Dapper Labs has an impressive track record of bringing NFTs mainstream by creating native experiences for non-crypto audiences. As a blockchain, Flow enables easier access and lowers the entry barrier for traditional consumers and brands, which makes it a perfect partner on our journey to the wider adoption.
“In the coming couple of months, we will be bringing Rarible on Flow as a primary and secondary marketplace, also welcoming the robust ecosystem of projects built on Flow blockchain,” Rarible said.
According to the company, last June, 6 months post-launch, total trading volume on Rarible hit the $28,000 mark. By June 2021 it grew by a mind-blowing 3000x, reaching $150 million in total sales.
“Just as we have always been at the forefront of the NFT movement, Rarible is determined to pioneer the next wave,” the co-founder of Rarible’s marketplace and CEO Alexei Falin said. “With this company milestone, we are thankful for the support of Venrock, 01 Advisors, and Coinfund and look forward to going beyond the current enclosed crypto environment and taking NFTs into mainstream consciousness.”
In a blog post the company says they hope to use this funding to explore more user-friendly developments like accepting credit card payments. “We need a world where an indie creator can effortlessly create an NFT and sell it for $5 to his community of supporters, as well as where a pop icon can use NFTs to establish close contact with her multi-million audience in a sustainable way.”
Rarible has a lot underway in the upcoming few months, including the launch of Rarible NFT protocol, L2 solution for scalability and sustainability, credit card payments, adoption of Flow blockchain, multiple partnerships and drops, and more. Many projects are already working on integrations with Rarible protocol, such as the partnership with one-click NFT creator S!NG that allows users to mint and put their NFTs on sale with no costs involved.