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Simplex, the fiat-crypto payment gateway, is to become a principal member of Visa in Europe. The move paves the way for Simplex to issue Visa (NYSE:V) debit cards to customers across Europe, and solidifies the company’s position as a trusted and fully regulated payment provider.
Founded in 2014, Simplex has grown into one of the largest payment providers within the cryptocurrency industry, with a partner network that includes many of the world’s largest crypto exchanges and wallets. Its Simplex Account service provides a virtual wallet for retail users to store fiat and cryptocurrency that can be used on the partner platforms it’s integrated with. Securing principal membership of Visa will strengthen the capabilities of Simplex throughout Europe, making it a vital cog in onboarding users to the cryptoconomy.
Visa Strengthens Ties With Simplex
Various cryptocurrency companies, including Wirex and Simplex, provide Visa-backed debit cards, which are provided via one of Visa’s subsidiaries. These enable verified users, who have completed KYC, to swap cryptocurrency for fiat within the accompanying mobile app, before loading it onto a physical or virtual debit card to be spent online, in-store and at 53 million locations where Visa is accepted.
According to Simplex CEO Nimrod Lehavi, principal membership of Visa validates the work the company has been doing to bridge the crypto and fiat worlds, making it easier to spend cryptocurrency in everyday life.
“Visa has been a valued component of the Simplex solution since we began our journey seven years ago, enabling people throughout the world to easily purchase cryptocurrency using their Visa cards,” said Lehavi. “Today, Simplex is provisionally approved for principal membership to the Visa network ... This collaboration is a huge leap forward to enabling the world to have true financial freedom.”
The Legitimization of Crypto
Visa’s willingness to work directly with Simplex, entrusting it to issue Visa-branded cards within Europe, exemplifies the mainstream acceptance of cryptocurrency. The digital currency once dismissed by fintechs, banks, and institutional investors is now being adopted by these very same entities. From PayPal’s (NASDAQ:PYPL) decision to introduce buy and sell support for cryptocurrency, to publicly listed companies like MicroStrategy (NASDAQ:MSTR) adding BTC to their balance sheets, crypto has been normalized and subsumed into traditional finance.
Through working diligently with regulators to provide a trusted environment for routing crypto payments, Simplex has prospered. Along the way, it’s demonstrated a willingness to act scrupulously in order to maintain its hard-earned reputation for serving as a trusted payment gateway. When the SEC announced that it was filing a lawsuit against Ripple, for example, Simplex moved to stop accepting XRP transactions, acting out of caution.
With principal membership now provisionally approved, Simplex will be able to directly issue Visa debit cards, not only to its own users, but to those of its partners. This will enable other regulated crypto companies to issue branded Visa cards, while working under the regulated framework provided by Simplex.
Disclosure: No positions. This Op-Ed is written by Reuben Jackson. Insider Monkey News Department isn’t involved in the production of this article.