Visa draws up NFT programme for creative artists

Visa has partnered with retired baseball player Micah Johnson to launch new NFT programme

Visa bank cards spread out in fan formation                                 
Visa joins former baseball player to launch NFT scheme – Photo: Shutterstock

Visa, a US multinational financial services corporation, is partnering with Micah Johnson to launch a programme designed to help creators understand non-fungible token (NFT) technology and harness public blockchains to produce and sell digital goods.

Johnson is a former Major League Baseball (MLB) player who changed tack to become a crypto artist when he retired from baseball in 2018.

Explaining the reasoning behind its new scheme, Visa said: “New technologies emerging in the crypto ecosystem, like NFTs, have the potential to lower the barrier to entry for digital creators across the world.”    

The company added that it believes NFTs make it “easier for creators to monetise their talent and build a business”.

The creator economy

Visa is excited about what NFTs can add to small businesses and the creator economy. The company said it will be opening an application process to select a group of creators for the first class.

Visa will also be providing consultation services to NFT artists to help them navigate the world of both crypto and traditional payment infrastructures. Additionally, the company says it intends to “foster meaningful relationships between creators and Visa’s network of payment partners”. Visa believes this will help artists reach new audiences and grow their businesses.

Johnson will act as a key collaborator as Visa develops its programme, ensuring that it provides value to the next generation of creators.

Cuy Sheffield, head of crypto at Visa, tweeted his support of the new scheme.

“Arm creators with the resources they need”

Johnson said: “NFTs unlocked an opportunity for me to build a community of people interested in supporting my work – in a way that goes way beyond simply liking or sharing. With guidance from the early crypto community, I’ve been able to build a small business around my crypto-native character, Aku, that can grow into a global media company rooted in driving value back to that same community that evangelised my work.

“I’m excited about the opportunity to work alongside and learn from a trusted brand like Visa. Working together, we want to arm creators with the resources they need to stay at the forefront of this revolution.”

Further reading: FTX US unveils Solana-based NFT marketplace

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