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Cryptocurrency payments app Wirex has announced a partnership with global payments network Visa as part of the firm's expansion plan in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region and the UK.
According to a press release on Monday, the partnership will enable the London-based Wirex to become a member of Visa in APAC and the UK. This will allow the platform to directly issue crypto-enabled debit and prepaid cards themselves to over 40 countries
"Visa wants to bring more payment options to consumers by connecting digital currencies with our network of banks and merchants,” said Matt Wood, Visa’s head of digital partnerships for APAC
“We're excited that Wirex is expanding their focus on Asia Pacific, making it easy and seamless for people to spend their crypto balance at the millions of merchants that accept Visa in the region," he added.
Wirex first collaborated with Visa in 2015 to become the first company in the world to develop a crypto-enabled card, enabling users to buy, hold, exchange, and sell multiple cryptocurrencies, as well as make purchases at over 80 million locations worldwide where Visa is accepted.
The firm was recently chosen as a finalist for the SFF Global Fintech Awards at the Singapore Fintech Festival in November.
Fintech x crypto on the rise
More "traditional" payments companies have been making a serious push into the crypto space.
Last year, Visa teamed up with the now defunct FTX to offer crypto debit cards in 40 countries across Latin America, Asia and Europe. The firm already has more than 70 crypto-based partnerships.
In January last year, fellow payments giant Mastercard announced a partnership that would allow users to pay on Coinbase's NFT marketplace. It also said that it is considering helping banks to develop CBDCs through a testing platform.