Visa (NYSE: V) and TransferWise announced a global partnership and the first use of Visa Cloud Connect, a new way for fintechs and partners to securely connect Visa’s global processing network, VisaNet, through the cloud. Visa Cloud Connect underpins a new global agreement between Visa and TransferWise that will enable the expansion of TransferWise’s multi-currency debit cards in the Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East, the U.K., and the U.S.
The TransferWise multi-currency account allows consumers and businesses to hold and convert 55 currencies at the real exchange rate. The multi-currency debit card lets customers spend and withdraw directly from any of the currency balances. Expanding the offering into new markets would have previously required significant investment in local data centers, telecommunications infrastructure, and specialized payment hardware. With Visa Cloud Connect, TransferWise can quickly establish a secure connection to VisaNet through its cloud provider, eliminating the need for costly local connectivity and speeding up TransferWise’s rollout plans.
“The TransferWise team came to us last year with a challenge: enable the global rollout of their debit card program, and do it entirely in the cloud,” said Jack Forestell, executive vice president and chief product officer, Visa. “It was an exciting opportunity for us to partner with TransferWise and show how we’re thinking and working differently to help today’s fintech innovators scale up quickly. With Visa Cloud Connect, we’ve created an approach that lets TransferWise tap into Visa’s global infrastructure—one of the most secure, reliable, and resilient systems in the world—through a single integration. Through our work with TransferWise, we’ve created a blueprint for other fintechs to quickly and securely connect with Visa’s massive scale and reach.”
“We’ve been working to remove borders in the world’s financial networks. Cards should work the same across borders too. In Visa, we found a partner who shares our ambitions to make money work seamlessly no matter where you are. We’re excited to see how the outcome of our collaboration impacts the next generation of multinational financial institutions across the globe,” said Kristo Käärmann, TransferWise co-founder and CEO.
Connecting Visa’s state-of-the-art infrastructure with the cloud
Today, global card programs expanding into multiple countries require investment in local data centers using specialized hardware and telecommunications infrastructure as well as coordination with local partners to adhere to regional standards. This can slow down new rollouts and delay customer adoption. Visa’s new Visa Cloud Connect platform provides a secure cloud-based connection to VisaNet, including a unified certification and testing framework, Visa-hosted security services such as transaction encryption and PIN key management, and simplified settlement in local markets.
This combination of technology and services simplifies global connectivity and testing, lowers IT costs through cloud integration and speeds time to market for launching programs in new geographies. This is particularly beneficial for new types of clients like TransferWise who have been operating on cloud-based systems from their inception.
Visa Cloud Connect is currently in the pilot phase with TransferWise and is slated for global availability for other clients in August 2021.
TransferWise Multi-currency Account
TransferWise, now 4-years profitable, serving 10 million customers and moving $6 billion in cross-border transactions every month, will be the first company to integrate globally with Visa via a single integration. This will dramatically speed up TransferWise’s plans to roll out to customers the debit cards that accompany its multi-currency account in a host of new markets.
Since launching the TransferWise multi-currency account in 2018, the company has issued more than 1 million debit cards through existing processors and partners. The account and card help people and businesses avoid high foreign transaction fees and costly exchange rates when traveling, managing their money in multiple currencies, or doing business across borders.