Visa invests in fintech start-up Deserve to drive adoption of crypto-powered cards
Payments giant Visa has made an undisclosed investment in California-based start-up Deserve, a fintech that provides credit card solutions.
The “strategic investment” from Visa will expand access to Deserve’s so-called ‘credit-card-as-a-service’ for financial institutions, fintechs and brands.
Visa joins other notable investors including Mission Holdings, Mastercard, Ally Ventures, Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Sallie Mae.
The investment expands a partnership that began under Visa’s Fintech Fast Track programme earlier this year.
The Fintech Fast Track programme acts as a sandbox that supports digital payment innovation by simplifying the collaboration process with Visa in order to develop and launch new fintech products.
As a result of the programme, Visa partnered with BlockFi and Deserve to launch what it calls the “world’s first” credit card with crypto rewards.
“Visa’s crypto team collaborated with BlockFi and Deserve to launch a crypto rewards credit card that would appeal to crypto enthusiasts and introduce crypto to the masses,” says Visa’s vice president of crypto AJ Shanley.
“The BlockFi Bitcoin rewards credit card has been an immediate success. [This] new investment in Deserve [will] continue to drive the adoption of crypto powered card programs.”
Deserve is one of the first credit-card-as-a-service software platforms to leverage Visa’s instant card issuance capability.
The firm says its mobile-first solution allows consumers to apply, activate and provision their card in digital wallets within minutes.
“This investment validates the industry’s embrace of a digital-first, embedded approach driven by APIs and SDKs,” says Deserve co-founder and CEO Kalpesh Kapadia.
“We’re transforming credit cards into software that lives on mobile devices not in wallets.”