Visa and Mastercard walk away from Binance due to legal problems

Visa and Mastercard
Mastercard and Visa credit cards are seen in this picture illustration taken June 9, 2016. REUTERS/Maxim Zmeyev/Illustration


  • Binance is facing legal challenges in the US, including charges from the SEC and CFTC.
  • Visa and Mastercard have reduced their ties to Binance, but the impact on the exchange’s market share could be minimal.
  • Despite the withdrawals, both payment giants continue to show interest in the blockchain industry.

Binance, the largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume, has been in the eye of the storm recently. Just weeks away from facing multiple legal challenges in the United States, payment giants Visa and Mastercard have decided to cut their ties with Binance. But what does this mean for the future of the crypto exchange?

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has filed multiple charges against Binance. These include allegations of operating an unregistered business and of misleading investors about the risks of the business. In addition, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) accused Binance in May of “intentional evasion” of US law. It doesn’t end there: the US Department of Justice is considering filing fraud charges against the exchange.

Given the magnitude of these legal challenges, the turn away from established companies like Visa and Mastercard is understandable. Dave Weisberger, CEO and co-founder of CoinRoutes, comments: “It’s not surprising that payment processors want to distance themselves.”

Visa and Mastercard movements

Visa would have stopped the issuance of new cards co-branded with Binance in Europe. A Mastercard spokesperson confirmed to CoinDesk the end of its partnership with Binance, without elaborating the reasons. “We had four pilot programs with them – Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Bahrain. This decision applies to all of these Binance programs,” he noted. Visa did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

On the other hand, Binance announced on the X social platform (formerly Twitter) that the Binance Card will no longer be available to users in Latin America and the Middle East.

Despite these developments, Binance’s position in the market seems unshakable. “It is difficult to assess the impact of this on Binance, which is still a leading exchange in terms of liquidity,” Weisberger says. Furthermore, he argues that as long as that doesn’t change, people will continue to operate there.

Leo Mizuhara, CEO of Hashnote, an institutional digital asset management platform regulated by the CFTC, also played down the end of the partnership. He adds that Mastercard’s decision aligns with his recent focus on the blockchain industry“Mastercard has shown a growing interest in the blockchain industry, and this move is more about being wary of potential bad actors,” he noted.

Both companies, Visa and Mastercard, have been active in the blockchain sector, even during prolonged bear markets. Both recently stated that they will continue with their industry partners to introduce payment programs to the market.