It looks like besides SBI Japan and Mitsubishi UFJ the other financial institutions of Japan are also taking a leap into the sea of cryptocurrencies. Mizuho, another major financial group of Japan, is reportedly planning to launch a bespoke stablecoin pegged to the national currency Yen. The coin is expected to be launched on 1st of March, and it will be launched in partnership with 60 other financial institutions. All these institutions collectively hold 56 million user accounts, and those accounts will be mapped directly to digital cryptocurrency wallets.
This information was published recently by local newspaper Nikkei Asian Review. According to the report, this new cryptocurrency will reportedly be called J-coin, and it will be managed by a dedicated mobile app called J-Coin Pay. Users will be able to scan the QR codes in order to make payments, and every unit of the currency will be mapped to 1 yen. Transfers between J-Coin Pay and bank accounts of users will be zero-fee transactions. Speaking on the matter Mizuho CEO Tatsufumi Sakai told Nikkei Asian Review:
“The arrival of all these new entrants [into the digital payments space] is eroding the common-sense notion that payment services are provided by financial institutions.”
As a result, it’s a must for these financial institutions to jump immediately into this space, which is what Mizuho is doing. Signing up for J-Coin Pay won’t require screening, as it requires for credit cards. The service will also be available to users under 18 yrs of age, unlike the traditional banking services. The service will also handle both payments as well as remittances, and member stores will be charged a very low transaction fees of 2% to 5%. Mizuho and its peers also plan to partner with companies like Alibaba and other similar technology groups to make J-Coin accepted at Alipay and other similar services.
Mizuho is reportedly also negotiating with FamilyMart, a major convenience store chain, East Japan Railways and electronics retailer Bic Camera to establish the new platform among industries. The company is targeting at least 300,000 stores and 6.5 million retailers within a few years.
In short, Mizuho looks all set with a plan for its J-Coin. However, despite its partnership with 60 peers and all other efforts its targeted outreach is still way behind Line Pay, which will serve as a major challenge to its offering. Line Pay is already accepted at more than 1.3 million retail stores and has got 79 million users in Japan. Now let’s see how long it takes for Mizuho’s J-Coin to reach its targeted user base.