Mastercard expands cryptocurrency services, wallets and loyalty rewards

Mastercard Inc, (MA.N), announced Monday that it will allow its partners to enable their customers to buy, hold, and sell cryptocurrency using a digital wallet. It also plans to reward them with digital currency under loyalty programs.

Bakkt Holdings Inc (BKKT.N), the digital assets platform created by Intercontinental Exchange (ICE.N ) NYSE-owner, announced that it would offer these services to credit card giants.

Bakkt was founded in 2018 and went public through a $2.1 million merger with a blank check company. The shares of Bakkt rose 77% to $16.19 Monday.

Mastercard stated that its partners can offer customers the opportunity to earn and spend cryptocurrency rewards instead of loyalty points.

The company stated in February that it would start offering support for some cryptocurrencies on its network.

Last year, the rival Visa Inc (V.N. ) had partnered to offer a credit-card that allows users to earn bitcoin for purchases.

Bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency in the world, reached a record $67,016 last Wednesday after the launch of the first U.S. bitcoin exchange-traded fund. Its value has more than doubled this year.

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