Gemini to Debut Crypto Rewards Mastercard
By Kate Fitzgerald
Published April 27, 2021, 7:00 a.m. EDT
Cryptocurrency exchange Gemini plans to roll out a rewards Mastercard this summer, targeting cryptocurrency neophytes.
Users may earn up to 3% back on purchases, but instead of cash the rewards will accumulate in bitcoin or any of 30 other cryptocurrencies Gemini supports, according to a Tuesday press release.
Because cryptocurrency is the only reward type available, the credit card — issued by WebBank with no annual fee — automatically generates crypto volume on Gemini’s platform.
Gemini also gives card users the option to transfer their crypto rewards into Gemini Earn, a new interest-earning program, the release said.
During the launch phase, New York-based Gemini is offering deals with DoorDash, HelloFresh, Lyft and Shoprunner, according to the release. Ongoing rewards include 3% crypto back on dining, 2% back on groceries and 1% on all other purchases.
The contactless card is made of metal and displays only the user’s name. For security, the 16-digit account number is visible to users through the Gemini website or mobile app via a two-factor authentication approach, the release said.
“As more consumers looks to enter the crypto ecosystem, the Gemini Credit Card gives them an easy point of entry and an effortless way to earn crypto as a reward without changing their spending habits,” said Tyler Winklevoss, Gemini’s CEO, who co-founded the company in 2014 with his twin brother Cameron.
“Our work with Gemini builds on the position of connecting customer needs with next-generation assets and delivering a ground-breaking experience that redefines the future of card rewards and benefits,” said Linda Kirkpatrick, Mastercard’s president of North America, in the release.
The card would appeal to the slice of consumers interested in deepening their crypto assets, said Len Covello, chief technology officer of Engage People, which creates corporate loyalty programs.
But the fact that cryptocurrency is the reward option could narrow the card’s appeal, Covello suggested.
“While this makes sense for Gemini and other card issuers rewarding the user in a currency they are transacting with, the consumer is limited in their ability to redeem the points, which is ultimately what drives loyalty,” he said.
Senior Editor, PaymentsSource