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While countries around the world are taking a slow and calculated approach to cryptocurrency utilization, fintech giants such as Mastercard and Visa are already incorporating cryptocurrency-friendly steps as part of their operations. In a new development, Mastercard has begun work on launching cryptocurrency-based loyalty rewards. The payments giant has reportedly decided to partner with Swoo Pay, a mobile payments app focused on emerging markets. Cryptocurrency culture appears to be gathering pace across the world, and this could serve as a helpful factor for fintech giants like Mastercard to explore the possibility of integrating their services with Web3.

Mastercard and Swoo Pay will jointly work to promote a culture of crypto-based loyalty rewards in emerging economies where people do not have access to Google Pay despite having access to Mastercard and Visa cards. Swoo users in countries such as Nigeria, Kenya, Philippines and Indonesia are rewarded with Swoo tokens when making payments through the app. These tokens can be converted to fiat or other cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and USD Coin.

As part of this plan, Mastercard will serve as the ultimate backer of Swoo tokens, according to a Coindesk report.

“Swoo Pay solves the problem of tokenized payments for Android users, increasing accessibility. Our collaboration is designed to provide additional innovative incentives to Swoo users making everyday purchases.” The report quoted a Mastercard executive commenting on the development.

Swoo also plans to push a Mastercard-based cryptocurrency loyalty rewards scheme into regions where Chinese-made Huawei smartphones are popular with the public. Due to US government sanctions, this phone does not have Google services such as Pay.

“Swoo’s contactless payments and cryptocurrency rewards will expose millions of consumers in emerging markets to the cryptocurrency ecosystem,” Filipp Shubin, co-CEO of Swoo, was quoted in a report by CoinTelegraph.

Meanwhile, Mastercard has taken several steps to experiment with cryptocurrencies. The company has already partnered with cryptocurrency exchanges including Binance, Nexo, and Gemini to offer cryptocurrency-linked payment cards in some countries.

To make blockchain-based financial ecosystems secure, scalable and interoperable, Mastercard is creating a ‘Multi-Token Network (MTN)’.

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