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November 1, 2016

Mastercard targets blockchain developers

Mastercard is continuing to increase its openness around blockchain technology.

By James Nunns

Mastercard has increased its interest in distributed ledger technology by adding blockchain Application Programming Interfaces to its developer site.

The company is following in the steps of rival Visa which revealed its own blockchain solution in late October called Visa B2B Connect.

Mastercard said that its own moves in the blockchain market are designed to facilitate new commerce opportunities, “for the digital transfer of value by allowing businesses and financial institutions to transact on a distributed ledger.”

The move will essentially allow developers from various industries such as banking and retail to gain free access to a core blockchain API, smart contracts API, and fast pay network API.

Mastercard has taken a collaborative approach to developing blockchain technologies.

Mastercard has taken a collaborative approach to developing blockchain technologies.

Mastercard is hoping that developers will experiment across a number of areas such as P2P, P2M, and B2B payments, in addition to trade finance and supply chain.

The APIs form part of Mastercard’s gateway for developers, which is designed to increase the company’s openness to new partners and technologies.

The company launched the gateway in September under the idea of being able to provide a single gateway to APIs that cover payments, data, security, and areas such as virtual reality.

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Mastercard appears to be in constant competition with Visa when it comes to expanding its move into these areas as Visa, which has taken a slightly different approach.

Last month Visa revealed that it had started working with Chain, a blockchain company, on the development of a near real-time funds transfer system for high value bank-to-bank and corporate payments.

The move from the credit card giant is a sign that it is continuing to move some of the work it had been doing internally to external teams.

Mastercard has previously been working with start-ups through its Start Path Global program, in addition to more than 30 blockchain-related patents that it has filed in recent years.

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