Visa has purchased a CryptoPunks NFT for 49.5 ETH (approximately $165,000 at the time of this article).
“Visa has amassed a collection of historic commerce artifacts over the last 60 years, ranging from early paper credit cards to the zip-zap machine. As we enter a new era of NFT-commerce, Visa is pleased to welcome CryptoPunk #7610 to our collection.”
This particular punk is one of 3840 female punks according to CryptoPunk creator Larva Labs. The transaction took place on August 18th and VISA announced the news in a tweet.
NFTs and Visa
Visa is optimistic about NFTs. Not only does the payments giant believe that “NFTs will play an important role in the future of retail, social media, entertainment, and commerce,” but it is also betting real money that this NFT will pay dividends in the future.
“In order to assist clients and partners, we need firsthand knowledge of the infrastructure requirements for a global brand to purchase, store, and leverage an NFT.” To that end, Visa’s purchase of CryptoPunk represents—at least from Visa’s perspective—an NFT that “symbolizes the excitement and opportunity of this particular cultural moment.”
Cuy Sheffield, Visa’s head of crypto, is also interested in the intersection of NFTs and sports. “NFTs are gaining traction as digital-first sports memorabilia,” he said in a prepared statement released today, adding, “We expect a vast array of new cases in the years ahead.”
What role can Visa play in the NFT market?
Sheffield claims that Visa can enable “secure commerce” in the NFT industry. In the short term, this entails assisting brands and businesses in better understanding the NFT market—and how it can help those entities with customer engagement.
Visa is also working on “new concepts and partnerships” that it believes will benefit NFT buyers, sellers, and creators in the future. Sheffield indicated that Visa looks forward to sharing more information in the coming months.
Jay Speakman is a technology writer based in San Francisco, California. He writes on the topics of blockchain, cryptocurrency, DeFi and other disruptive technologies. Clients include Avalanche, Be[in]Crypto, Trust Machines and several blogs devoted to blockchain gaming. He will not rest until fiat currency is defeated.