Visa CEO Al Kelly says that cryptocurrencies do not currently pose a threat to his company’s dominant position in the payments industry “in any way”. Still, he says the company is open to moving into the crypto space if such a move would be necessary in the future.
Speaking to CNBC’s Jim Cramer, Kelly said:
“If it goes in that direction, we will move in that direction. We want to be in the middle, Jim, of every payment flow in the world regardless of how it happens or what the currency is behind it.”
According to Kelly, cryptocurrencies are currently thought of more as a commodity than a currency. In the case of Bitcoin, the world’s largest cryptocurrency, it’s hard to disagree – even though Satoshi Nakamoto’s original idea was for Bitcoin to function as peer-to-peer electronic cash, the narrative has since shifted to Bitcoin being a store of value.
The shift was most likely caused by Bitcoin’s scalability issues, as Bitcoin’s upper performance limit of about 7 transactions per second is simply inadequate for broad use as a currency. Of course, workarounds are being developed – second layer solutions such as the Lightning Network promise to make the process of spending Bitcoin much faster, but the technology is still somewhat experimental and not yet fit for widespread use.