June 29, 2023 at 16:13 GMTModified date: August 9, 2023 at 09:23 GMT
June 29, 2023 at 16:13 GMT

Mastercard to launch blockchain-based app store 

Payment processing giant Mastercard have announced plans to launch a blockchain app store later this year.

Blockchain. Pic: Shutterstock

Payment processing giant Mastercard have announced plans to launch a blockchain app store later this year. The app will enable developers to create applications using Mastercard’s blockchain technology.

Today, 29 June, initial reports emerged stating that the company will unveil a beta version of the ‘Multi-Token Network’ (MTN) during the summer season in the UK. Raj Dhamodharan, head of crypto and blockchain products at Mastercard, described MTN as a blockchain-powered app store specifically designed for constructing financial applications.

He explained that MTN will serve “as a test bed for the development of live pilot applications and use cases in collaboration with financial institutions, fintech companies, and central banks”.

According to Dhamodharan, MTN is built on four pillars of trust – Trust in counterparty, Trust in digital payment asset, Trust in technology and Trust in consumer protections. These pillars are designed to instil trust in various aspects of the network’s operations.

Per the official announcement, the first phase of the applications will be powered by tokenised bank deposits. 

An excerpt from the report reads: “MTN represents one of Mastercard’s most ambitious projects in the digital asset space to date. It is a natural evolution that demonstrates Mastercard’s commitment to offering a wider range of payment solutions that are safe, easy to access and always on.”

Mastercard’s past crypto initiatives

Mastercard has for long been an active player in the cryptocurrency space. In April this year, the payment giant teamed up with Aptos, Polygon, Avalanche, Solana to launch the ‘Mastercard Crypto Credential’.

The solution was developed to establish a set of common standards and infrastructure that will help attest trusted interactions among consumers and businesses using blockchain networks. 

In October last year, it launched a scheme to help banks offer crypto trading services to their customers. The scheme was designed to help customers gain exposure to cryptocurrencies through trusted financial institutions – banks. 

Mastercard’s chief digital officer, Jorn Lambert, told CNBC: “There’s a lot of consumers out there that are really interested in this, and intrigued by crypto, but would feel a lot more confident if those services were offered by their financial institutions. It’s still scary for some people out there.”