Tala and Visa Team Up on Cryptocurrency Solution for Global Underbanked

The new collaboration, with additional partners Circle and the Stellar Development Foundation, will bring the benefits of the digital currency ecosystem to emerging markets 

SANTA MONICA, CA – May 5, 2021 — Tala, a leading digital financial services provider in emerging markets, announced today a new partnership with Visa (NYSE:V) to help underbanked populations participate in the crypto economy. Together with additional partners Circle and the Stellar Development Foundation, Tala will explore opportunities to make it easier for underbanked consumers to convert, store, and use crypto currencies, beginning with USDC, the stablecoin governed by the Centre Consortium.  

USDC is a fully reserved and regulated dollar digital currency that has seen more than 1,000% year-over-year growth and now has more than $13B in circulation. New use cases have continued to emerge around USDC, including cross border B2B payments and remittances. But these uses represent only a portion of what USDC and other crypto solutions can offer to the estimated 3 billion people globally who are poorly served by the formal economy. Tala and its partners want to advance a core promise of digital currency ecosystems by delivering more efficient and equitable financial tools to people who are currently excluded from traditional financial services. 

Through Tala’s integration with Circle and Stellar, Tala customers will have access to USDC in Tala’s digital wallet, enabling secure and stable storage of money, fast and affordable cross-border money transfers, and easy exchange into other digital assets or local fiat. Tala’s partnership with Visa will enable Tala to offer Visa cards linked to Tala’s digital wallet, giving customers a seamless way to spend against their USDC balance at any of the 70 million merchants worldwide that accept Visa. 

“Since our start seven years ago, Tala has been a leader in leveraging data and next generation mobile technology to solve the seemingly intractable problem of financial inclusion,” said Shivani Siroya, Tala’s CEO and Founder. “Digital currencies have tremendous potential to radically open financial access and put more control directly into the hands of underbanked and underestimated people. We couldn’t be more excited that Visa, Circle, and the Stellar Development Foundation share our vision and want to work on a solution, not only for Tala’s 6 million global customers but for the billions more who can benefit.”

“Digital currencies like USDC have the potential to extend the value of digital payments to a greater number of people and places,” said Cuy Sheffield, Visa’s Head of Crypto. “We’re excited to partner with Tala’s global team to bring the benefits of the crypto economy to the populations that need it most.”

“Tala is a pathbreaker at the forefront of a new generation of financial services that provide greater access to economic opportunities for the historically underbanked,” said Circle Co-Founder and CEO, Jeremy Allaire. “We are proud to be working alongside Visa and the Stellar Development Foundation to bring the power of dollar digital currency to millions of Tala customers around the world.”

“I am thrilled to see Tala and Visa forge this partnership to leverage the power of the Stellar network and Circle’s world class USDC stablecoin to empower underbanked populations with fast and affordable financial tools and services,” said Denelle Dixon, CEO and Executive Director, the Stellar Development Foundation.  “Our mission, creating equitable access to the global financial system, is only attainable when companies like Tala, Visa, and Circle share our vision that financial inclusion is a right, not a privilege.”

About Tala

Tala is the leading personal finance app serving the global underbanked. Powered by 7 years of proprietary data, Tala has delivered more than $2 billion in credit to more than 6 million customers across Mexico, the Philippines, Kenya, and India, who use Tala to start and expand small businesses, pay school fees and bills, and build more stable financial lives. Tala has raised more than $200 million from leading venture and impact investors including RPS Ventures, GGV Capital, IVP, Revolution Growth, Lowercase Capital, Data Collective VC, ThomVest Ventures and PayPal Ventures. Tala has offices in Santa Monica, Nairobi, Manila, Mexico City, and Bangalore.

1. Elisabeth Rhyne and Sonja E. Kelly, Financial Inclusion Hype vs Reality: Deconstructing the 2017 Findex Results (Center for Financial Inclusion | Accion, 2018). Retrieved from https://content.centerforfinancialinclusion.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2018/09/FI_Hype_vs_Reality_Deconstructing_2017_Findex_Results-08032018-1.pdf