Mastercard partners R3 for blockchain payments

Mastercard is partnering with software company R3 to develop a blockchain-powered cross border payments solution.

Under the terms of the strategic partnership, Mastercard will act as the network operator to process, clear and settle international payments while R3’s blockchain software and Corda ecosystem will enable banks to deliver a single frictionless real-time payments proposition.

Mastercard said the solution will initially focus on connecting global faster payments infrastructures, schemes and banks supported by a clearing and settlement network.

The deal comes after Mastercard strengthened its cross-border network reach with its acquisition of Transfast in July.

Peter Klein, executive vice president of new payment platforms at Mastercard, said: “Developing a new and better cross-border B2B payments solution by improving worldwide connectivity in the account-to-account space is central to Mastercard’s ambition.

“Our goal is to deliver global payment infrastructure choice and connectivity as demonstrated through our recent strategic acquisitions and partnerships, including our relationship with R3. It confirms our commitment to innovation, both home-grown and through partnerships and acquisitions, to support advances and innovation in the increasingly complex global payment infrastructure space.”

The partnership with R3 will provide access to R3’s Corda ecosystem, which includes more than 300 of the world’s leading financial services firms, technology companies, central banks, regulators and trade associations.

David E. Rutter, chief executive of R3, said: “We are excited to partner with Mastercard to help shape the future of the digital payments ecosystem. All institutions – large or small – rely on the ability to send and receive payments.

However, he explained: “Cross-border payments can be a particular pain point,” adding: “Corda was designed specifically for enterprise use cases such as this, and we look forward supporting Mastercard in bringing blockchain-enabled payments businesses across the globe.”

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