Global credit card company Mastercard has ended its partnership with cryptocurrency broker Binance, according to a report by Reuters. The collaboration involved Binance offering a Mastercard-branded card to its users in Argentina, Brazil, Bahrain, and Colombia.
This development has raised concerns about Binance’s regulatory troubles and their potential impact on the company’s partners. Binance had launched a Mastercard-branded credit card in January, allowing users to make cryptocurrency transactions in physical stores and online.
In their official statement, Binance emphasized the significance of South America as a market, particularly highlighting Brazil’s importance among the top 10 global markets. The company expressed intentions to aggressively promote its services in Brazil, citing the fact that half of all Brazilian consumers engaged in some form of crypto-related activity in 2022, surpassing the global average.
Binance also mentioned Argentina’s high levels of crypto adoption due to triple-digit inflation and limited access to financial services. However, Mastercard confirmed to Reuters that the partnership across the four countries would end by September, without specifying whether the decision was made solely by Mastercard or mutual between the two parties.
This move by Mastercard suggests that the decision likely originated from the credit card giant itself, given Binance’s focus on the lucrative South American markets.
During the Q2 earnings call in late July, Mastercard CEO Michael Miebach expressed the company’s belief in the potential of blockchain technologies. Reuters confirmed that Mastercard remains committed to its other crypto card collaborations, highlighting the company’s interest in maintaining a presence in the cryptocurrency space.
However, the termination of the partnership with Binance indicates the desire to distance themselves from the cryptocurrency broker, whose CEO, Changpeng Zhao, has faced allegations from US regulators for orchestrating a “web of deception.” Some speculate whether Mastercard received advance notice from US authorities regarding potential actions against Binance.
While these events may lead to speculation, users of the Binance platform are advised to exercise caution in light of the recent developments.