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Difference between Visa Inc. and MasterCard

Visa Inc. and MasterCard are multinational payment technology companies with large payment networks. They act as intermediaries between banks and customers and provide plenty of services to customers through banks. Both are credit card processing companies: MasterCard and Visa credit cards are the two well-known credit cards which are accepted worldwide and belong to MasterCard and Visa Inc. respectively. The costs, benefits, and conditions associated with these cards are set by the banks issuing the cards. The banks usually offer different types of each card with specific price and benefits. Let us see how Visa differs from Master Card!

Visa Inc.:

Visa Inc. is an international payments technology company which connects businesses, banks, governments and territories to electronic payments. It ensures a safe transfer of funds electronically throughout the world. It was established in 1970 by Hock Dee and is headquartered in San Francisco, CA. It connects consumers, businesses, banks and governments in more than 200 countries across the world.

Visa Inc. offers credit, debit and prepaid cards to individuals and business but it does not issue the cards directly to their customers, rather, it coordinates with banks and financial institutions and let them provide payment products under the brand name "Visa". A typical Visa transaction involves a merchant, an acquirer, an issuer and the cardholder.

  • The merchant can be a retailer, hotel, restaurant, or airline that accepts Visa.
  • The acquirer is a financial institution that enables merchants to be paid.
  • The issuer is the bank or a financial institution that offers Visa cards and other payment products.
  • The cardholder is the consumer or a business that is using the Visa cards and payment products to make payments.

Master Card:

MasterCard is a multinational payment technology organization which collaborates with banks and financial institutions to issue MasterCard credit cards in order to process payments. It is headquartered in Harrison, New York, USA.

It offers various products like credit cards, debit cards, prepaid card under the brand name "MasterCard". It does not directly offer these products to customers; rather, it ties up with the banks and then these banks distribute these financial products to the customers.

Based on the above information, some of the key differences between Visa Inc. and Master Card are as follows:

Visa Inc. Master Card
It is payment technology company, headquartered in San Francisco, CA. It is a payment technology company, headquartered in New York, USA.
It is founded in 1970, offers visa credit card. It is founded in 1966, offers Mastercard credit card.
Its website is MasterCard.com Its website is: visa.com
It offers two level benefits to its customers: base level and Visa Signature program. It offers three level benefits to its customers: base level, World MasterCard and World Elite Master Card programs.
Total assets: US$33.408 Billion (FY 2010) Total assets: US$8.837 Billion (FY 2010)
Revenue as of FY 2010: US$8.065 Billion Revenue as of FY 2010: US$5.539 Billion
The total market capitalization of Visa as of August 2016 was more than 190 Billion. As of August 2016, the total market capitalization of MasterCard was around 106 Billion.
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