Mizuho Financial Group is teaming up with Mizuho Bank, Metaps and WiL to create a new service settlement using FinTech.
According to a report, the four companies signed a memorandum of understanding in October in which they agreed to create a new company that will be focused on providing a new digital wallet app and electronic payments by using big data.
The jointly owned and established company will be able to access Mizuho’s customer base and tap its knowledge of the financial services industry to launch the company. Metaps brings data analytics and electronic payments know-how to the company, as well as smartphone app expertise. Meanwhile WiL, a venture capital firm, has extensive knowledge in cutting-edge service providers.
According to the companies, the new company will be called M Wallet Preparation Company Inc., will be located in Tokyo and will facilitate electronic payments via a digital wallet app, payment data-leveraged marketing, as well as engage in other related businesses. The company is slated to launch on May 1, 2017, with operations up and running by the summer.
Mizuho joins a growing list of banks around the globe that are pushing into the FinTech market, which has been dominated by startups. It also comes at a time when consumers in Japan are warming up to digital wallets.
According to a report in February, a survey of smartphone users in Japan conducted in October by Hakuhodo, a Japanese advertising firm, revealed that greater than 31 percent of respondents wanted to consolidate their different payment functions on their mobile devices. That percentage was 41.3 percent among smartphone users in Japan that were male.
The report noted that consolidating payment tools has been around for more than 10 years in Japan via a technology standard dubbed “Osaifu-Keitai,” which the report said means “mobile wallet.” In Japan, consumers have been able to use their smartphones for public transit tickets and to store information like credit cards, loyalty cards and IDs.
But it’s not only that recent research report that shows Japanese smartphone users are embracing the payment technology. A Deloitte survey conducted in July found that close to 50 percent of smartphone users in Japan have used mobile payments in stores.