Stripe Strengthens Support of Japan’s Small Businesses with JCB

Stripe is expanding its support of small businesses in Japan with a new agreement.

Stripe and Japan-based payments brand JCB recently announced that they had signed a memorandum of understanding enabling Stripe merchants to accept the JCB brand.

The solution will enable Stripe retailers to accept JCB in any local currency.

“Our partnership with JCB will enable Stripe merchants in Japan to begin accepting payments from more than 110 million JCB cardmembers – and hundreds of thousands of Stripe businesses outside of Japan will also soon be able to accept payments from JCB customers,” Claire Hughes Johnson, COO of Stripe, said in a press release.

“With less than 6% of commerce in Japan today online, there’s an enormous opportunity to enable a whole new generation of online businesses in Japan and around the world,” Johnson said.

Stripe entered the Japanese market in 2016. At that time, the company noted the opportunity it saw for Stripe to work with local entrepreneurs.

In a blog post, the company cited the “growing local startup ecosystem, an appetite to build new types of businesses (like SaaS companies and marketplaces), and an increasing interest from Japanese companies to expand beyond the local market and go global” as reasons for entering the market.

According to Research and Markets, online retail sales have been growing at a double-digit rate in Japan. Half of the country’s internet-connected population shops online, and ecommerce is projected to comprise around 10% of the country’s total retail by 2021, the research firm said.

By comparison, ecommerce accounts for just over 9% of retail sales in the U.S., according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

While ecommerce grows in Japan, the country’s consumers have lagged their Asian counterparts in adopting mobile payments. As PaymentFacilitator has previously reported, the Japanese government set a goal last year of doubling digital transactions in 10 years.