• Nna/kyodo


Major Japanese credit card issuer JCB Co. will partner with Singaporean fintech startup Socash Pte. Ltd. to launch its first cardless cash advance service in Southeast Asia after spring 2020.

The two are in discussion on the new service, which will in effect see cash registers at retail outlets turned into automated teller machines, according to a JCB statement released Wednesday.

They aim to meet the need for more secure and convenient financial services for Japanese tourists visiting Southeast Asian countries, the statement said.

By registering credit card information with a Socash smartphone application, users will be able to withdraw local currencies from cash registers at partner retailers after showing a QR code displayed on their device.

The two are set to provide a Japanese-language version of the application and initially open the service to a limited number of Japanese JCB members before extending the service to all members, a spokeswoman for JCB told NNA on Wednesday.

This will be Socash’s first partnership with a global credit card brand since it launched its service for withdrawing cash from bank accounts without the need for ATMs in March 2018.

Socash has reached over 130,000 users and processed over 1.5 million transactions with 1,400 partner merchants in Singapore, as well as expanding its service to Malaysia, Indonesia and Hong Kong among other Southeast Asian markets, according to the statement.

The startup is backed by Glory Ltd., a Japanese cash machine maker, and subsidiaries of the Singaporean state-owned fund Temasek Holdings Pte. Ltd. and the U.K.’s Standard Chartered Bank.

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