On March 20th, Mastercard and Australian stablecoin platform Stables revealed their partnership aimed at integrating a stablecoin digital wallet. The global payment provider plans to allow retail customers in the Asia-Pacific region to use their stablecoins wherever Mastercard is accepted.
This collaboration will involve a stablecoin-only wallet developed by Stables and a payment card supported by Mastercard. By converting the digital currency into fiat and settling on Mastercard's network, the payment card will allow users to save and spend the USD Coin stablecoin. The card can be accessed via mobile wallets on the Stables digital application.
Mastercard Australasia's head of fintech, Kallan Hogan, has stated that the collaboration with Stables represents a significant development for Web3 adoption. Hogan affirmed Mastercard's commitment to providing innovative payment solutions that allow cardholders the flexibility to spend their assets according to their preferences. He further remarked that Stables is creating a Web3 solution that utilizes Mastercard's global network and cyber and intelligence tools, such as CipherTrace and Ekata, with a focus on trust and security.
According to Stables co-founder and CEO Daniel Li, the Mastercard-backed wallet integration will be released to users in the second quarter of 2023. Initially, the stablecoin digital Mastercard will be available to Australian users before being launched in Europe, the United States, the United Kingdom, and most of the Asia Pacific. Li stated that the payment solution employs Stables' proprietary settlement engine, which processes payments using USDC and collaborates directly with Mastercard to enable settlement.
The wallet also accepts deposits in various stablecoins, including Tether and Binance USD, which will be automatically converted into USDC at no additional cost.
Despite the recent collapse of Silvergate Bank, Stables CEO Daniel Li expressed confidence in the future of USDC, stating that stablecoins would play a critical role in bridging traditional and decentralized finance in the new financial system. Li further noted that Stables would continue to work with USDC and Circle as a vital component of this ecosystem.
In addition to cryptocurrency, users can top up their balances using various payment methods such as bank transfers and direct debit, according to Li.
Stables currently supports deposits and withdrawals in Australian dollars, with upcoming integrations for the US dollar, euro, British pound, and currencies from the APAC, Latin America, and African regions.