Visa to Research Blockchain in Innovation Labs

19 Now Offering Cryptocurrency Withdrawals to VISA or MasterCard — International financial service company Visa Inc. has announced to research Bitcoin and blockchain technology in its innovation lab.

According to Live Mint, the payment network giant has assembled a team of IT professionals to conduct the said research. As reported further, the company will be looking forward to integrate the blockchain technology into its digital mobile payment solutions — Visa Checkout and mVisa. The executive vice-president of Visa, Mr. Rajat Taneja, explained:

“For now, the focus of this technology innovation centre will be on Visa Checkout and mVisa, but for certain, India will soon have teams that will jointly work with our two research labs in US and Singapore in studying the many aspects of blockchain.”

With the announcement, Visa has completely retracted from its earlier statements on Bitcoin and blockchain. The CEO of the company, Charlie Scharf, had said in 2014 that he does not see the said technologies as a threat to their business empire. He further called them complex and unsafe.

But with the constant escalation of Bitcoin and blockchain into the traditional financial space, the old definitions seemed to be wearing off at last. It is clear that Visa is simply tailing its counterparts when it comes to experimenting with the disruptive payment technologies. Earlier, many banks, financial institutions and government houses have called out for innovating the existing banking and settlement infrastructure. Visa wouldn’t want to be left out, indeed.

The company has employed over 400 engineers in its India-based innovation lab, and is expecting to scale it further to 1,000. It is also hoping to form partnerships with other Indian firms, including Tata Consultancy Service and Infosys — both of whom are reported to have been experimenting with blockchain as well.