Visa Network Could Support Bitcoin Transactions

CEO of Visa, Charlie Scharf, gave an interview where he commented on bitcoin and the future plans of Visa relating to the digital currency.

Photo: Håkan Dahlström/Flickr

Photo: Håkan Dahlström/Flickr

Charlie Scharf, CEO of the world payments provider Visa, has given an interview to The Australian Financial Review where he spoke about bitcoin and its technology. Earlier this year, Scharf said the company didn’t think of accepting digital currency due to the potential risks and threats. And now it seems like the firm re-evaluated bitcoin.

In his new interview, Scharf commented that although the company is not responding to the developments in the bitcoin industry, it is likely to do it in the future if the circumstances require.

He told The Australian Financial Review: “Visa is not a currency, it’s a network. We can process real or virtual currencies to the extent that it makes sense. So, [facilitating bitcoin payments] is possible but we are not thinking about it today.”

He also stated that Visa has no plans of creating its digital currency under the Visa brand, as has been suggested by some of its competitors.

In the end of July, the company launched Visa Digital Solutions, an initiative aimed at supporting new payment methods and encouraging technology that supports users and innovation.

Visa is now trying to align its brand with the revolution in virtual and mobile payments.

The company has recently opened new office Visa Labs in San Francisco meant to provide new next-generation ideas for the firm. Moreover, its presented new version of its online credit card Visa Checkout that will raise the speed of online payments for its users.

Sam Shrauger, senior vice president of digital solutions at Visa, supported the company’s strategy to embrace new developents and changes brought by the technology. He also told The Australian Financial Review: “We are now seeing connected thermostats and cars and everything – our view is that a lot of those things will become points of transaction.”

From 2004 to 2012, Shrauger was a vice president of global product and design at the Californian online payment services provider PayPal.

His involvement in digital payments suggests that some members of Visa are considering the possibilities of bitcoin and its technologies, which may have further influence at the company.

PayPal has steadily expressed support of digital currency when corporate strategist Roman Leal joined Blockchain’s Peter Smith for a speech at The North American Bitcoin Conference on 20th July.

On 31st of July, PayPal also held an event called ‘Introduction to Bitcoin’ in San Jose in California.

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