Mastercard proudly announced its new ‘FinTech Express’ platform at the Singapore FinTech Festival. In an interview with Bloomberg, Mastercard Asia Pacific Co-President, Ari Sarker discussed the platform, and also gave some insight into Mastercard’s withdrawal from the Libra Association.

Doesn’t Quite Live Up To The Billing

Sarker’s portrayal of the initiative was of expanding Mastercard’s reach for FinTech partnership. Painting Mastercard as an enabler for all players, whether traditional banking or FinTech. The platform would accelerate the way that Mastercard onboard FinTech firms onto its global platform, he said.

When pushed for tangible examples, Sarker explained that the company was targeting FinTechs with its rules, capability, platforms and licensing process. In essence, Mastercard has streamlined the onboarding process for FinTech companies that want to use their services.

Hardly ‘expanding the reach for FinTech partnership’, but a huge improvement in refusing to provide services for companies in the sector. Sarker even said that many services could be enabled in a fraction of the time of that for traditional firms.

Avoid Becoming Obsolete

It was asked why (when the need for efficiency has always existed) this should be announced now. Was it because the technology now existed or because competitors would offer the services of Mastercard didn’t?

Sarker responded that it was a little of both. Whilst he saw Mastercard’s role in the evolution of payment services, from plastic cards through to mobile devices, he acknowledged that new players would offer the services if it didn’t.

Sarker wouldn’t be drawn on what parts of Mastercard’s business may be obsolete in ten years’ time, focussing instead on remaining nimble enough to respond to changes.

Mastercard Explains Withdrawal From Libra Association

Sarker also gave some insight into Mastercard’s recent withdrawal from the Libra Association. He said that the partnership came about because Mastercard recognized its commitments as a regulated payments framework.

If it was inside the tent, he said, the feeling was that it would give an opportunity to shape some of the conversations.

However, the company stepped back because it felt that certain basic core tenets were not being adhered to.

What do you think about Mastercard’s Fintech Express Platform? Share your thoughts in the comments below. 

Images via Bitcoinist Media Library

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