Interview with Dr Saeeda Jaffar Senior VP & Country Manager GCC, VISA
Intrigued by the latest developments at VISA, with its FIFA World Cup sponsorship and VISA’s launching of a unique assortment of NFTs, called MAstersOfMovement NFT experience, Economy Middle East met with Dr. Saeeda Jaffar, Senior VP & Country Manager GCC, Visa, at VISA’s UAE Innovation Center, and asked the following:
Could you tell us a little bit more about Visa’s sponsorship of the FIFA World Cup?
Absolutely. Visa and FIFA’s partnership has been a very longstanding partnership, and it stems from a joint passion for sports and believing that sports are really a great way for uniting the world and getting everybody together around something that we all enjoy and appreciate.
Why is Visa launching a unique assortment of NFTs?
Visa is an organization that is built on innovation. We are a technology company. We have been the original fintech. And for us, it’s incredibly important, incredibly critical to always be ahead with innovation. We believe that NFTs are very important and critical components of digital assets today. We believe NFTs will be very important in shaping and defining commerce tomorrow. Therefore, it is an area we are very deeply involved in, and it is something that we would like to bring to the world this time around.
Who is creating the NFTs for the Visa Masters of Movement Goal auction?
You, me, and each and every one of us that participates in this. The way this would work is this: let’s imagine we are in Qatar. We’ve either just watched a game or we are going to watch a game and we are in the fan zone. We see the Masters of Movement pavilion in front of us. We walk in, and what you see in front of you is a pitch. It’s a beautiful pitch, and you can go in. You can play with your friends or whoever you may choose to play with. And then as you play, your movements are transformed into a work of art, digital art that is then minted and that belongs to you. And that’s what creates the NFT.
What makes NFTs different from digital art?
That is around ownership. Two people may have the same piece of art, if you will. But really, who owns it? It’s really and truly about identifying and saying this is an authentic piece. And secondly identifying who owns this authentic piece. That is what an NFT is. It’s creating that proof of ownership in the digital world. This parallels the physical proof of ownership that we have in the physical world.
What are some other ways to be involved in the Visa Masters of Movement?
First and foremost, please come join us in Qatar. It is going to be a very, very exciting month starting off very soon. If you’re there, absolutely show up in Qatar, participate, be a part of it, experience it, and then tell others about it so that they can also come in and they can also experience it and share it.
2022 has been a rather difficult year for crypto. However, GCC countries seem to have performed rather well. Could you share some key trends with us?
Look, crypto is something that the region is very familiar with. We already see very high usage of crypto, especially from an investment perspective in the region. So from our point of view, this is something that most people or a lot of people here are aware of.
I think as we go forward next year, it’s probably a couple of key things that we think we’ll likely see more and more of. I think the number one thing we will see is the maturation of the ecosystem. We’ll see some more of the players. Think about some more use cases in which crypto can become a lot more embedded in our day-to-day life. I think that’s one part.
But I think what we’ll also see is a bit more of an understanding, appreciation, and almost education around crypto because whatever your and my personal beliefs may be about crypto, the reality is that it is here. Therefore, let’s make sure that we and everybody around us are educated and understand both the opportunities as well as the risks.