Japanese bitcoin exchange Bitpoint announced on Wednesday the partnership with Nippon Pay to offer cryptocurrency payment options alongside China’s three most popular payment services.
“The World’s First”
Bitpoint informed their customers on Wednesday that the company has “agreed to form a business tie-up on the deployment of virtual currency settlement services” with multi-payment service Nippon Pay. With this partnership, China’s three major payment services, Wechat Pay, Alipay, and Unionpay will be joined by bitcoin and ether payment options on the new platform. Bitpoint wrote:
We are planning to begin handling store settlement services by Ethereum from August 2017 in addition to Bitcoin settlement.
Bitpoint is calling this service “the world’s first,” because it is the first time Bitcoin and Ethereum will be offered alongside China’s most popular payment services. The company also claims that this is the first time ether will be offered as a payment option in Japan. In an interview with Payment News, the president of Nippon Pay further made the claim that his service is the first in Japan to offer Wechat Pay and Alipay all in one application.
The Tokyo-based Nippon Pay offers payment solutions for businesses with a focus on Chinese mobile payments. “In addition to face-to-face mobile payment at physical stores, we also offer a multi-payment service of China’s three major settlement services; Wechat Pay, Alipay, and UnionPay,” the company explained. Nippon Pay users make these different types of payments using a smartphone app, available for Android and iOS devices. Two additional payment platforms are planned for the end of the year. One is the top mobile payment service in South Korea, Kakao Pay. The other is the most used mobile payment platform in both Thailand and Taiwan, Line Pay.
Crypto Payments Alongside Wechat Pay, Alipay, and Unionpay
Nippon Pay’s platform is tailored for Chinese tourists visiting Japan. According to a Chinese travel service, Ctrip, Japan is the third most popular destination for the Chinese. The Japan Tourism Agency reported that 6.37 million Chinese visited Japan last year, spending 1.47 trillion yen in the land of the rising sun.
Unionpay is the largest card payment organization in the world. It also offers mobile and online payments and operates under the approval of the People’s Bank of China (PBOC). Alibaba Group’s Alipay and Tencent Group’s Wechat Pay are the two major smartphone payment services in China. These three providers collectively represent over 70 percent of the Chinese market, accounting for approximately $2.9 trillion USD worth of online payments during 2016, according to payments technology platform Dlocal.
Another Point for Bitpoint
This latest venture with Nippon Pay adds to Bitpoint’s list of impressive Bitcoin merchant projects. The company made headlines back in May when it partnered with Peach Aviation to introduce various Bitcoin services to the travel industry. Soon after, the company revealed that it was in talks with potential partners to add bitcoin payments to over 100,000 stores in Japan. Then earlier this month, it revealed a partnership with Japan’s largest online travel agent to bring bitcoin payments to over 1,400 hotels this summer.