Digital PaymentsTechnology For SMEs

JCB, IDEMIA and Soft Space launch JCBDC Pilot to Test CBDC In-Store Payments

Central banks in many countries and regions have been testing CBDCs that could be widely accepted by consumers and merchants.

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JCB, the leading international payment brand from Japan, has announced the JCBDC (JCB Digital Currency) Pilot project with IDEMIA, a world leader in identity technologies, and Soft Space, Asia’s leading secure payments platform. The JCBDC Pilot will test a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) payment solution, and conduct a demonstration experiment with Tokyo merchants.

Central banks in many countries and regions have been testing CBDCs that could be widely accepted by consumers and merchants. However, merchants might be reluctant to accept them, and mass-market rollout may be held up by people without smartphones, like children and the elderly, who could find the user interfaces and payment systems hugely challenging.

JCB will have CBDC acceptance tested using its existing ‘JCB Contactless’ infrastructure – EMV-based payment merchants, POS terminals and plastic card-based user interfaces – with guidance from IDEMIA and Soft Space. JCB, IDEMIA and Soft Space will have concluded CBDC system development by late 2022 and will conduct pilot CBDC acceptance with Tokyo merchants through March 2023.

“It gives me great honour to announce our collaboration with IDEMIA and Soft Space on this CBDC acceptance project,” said Koremitsu Sannomiya, Board Member and Senior Executive Officer of JCB. “This project proves that we can use existing payment acceptance hardware for new CBDC payment systems, which is a huge benefit for both consumers and merchants.”

“We at IDEMIA firmly believe that CBDCs are redefining the very fundamentals of the payment ecosystem. We’re proud that our ability to innovate has enabled CBDC payments with existing JCB Contactless cards and POS terminal hardware. Joint payment systems by IDEMIA, JCB and Soft Space will usher in worldwide CBDC growth,” said Romain Zanolo, IDEMIA Managing Director, APAC Financial Institutions.

“We’re thrilled to be in the world’s first trial of CBDC acceptance on SoftPOS, alongside partners JCB and IDEMIA. Although CBDCs are still in their infancy, this pilot takes a forward leap, from theory to reality, by harnessing in-store payment experience and existing payment platform expertise,” said Soft Space CEO Joel Tay.

*EMV(R), a registered trademark in the U.S. and other countries, is owned by EMVCo, LLC.

SMEStreet Edit Desk

SMEStreet Edit Desk is a small group of excited and motivated journalists and editors who are committed to building MSME ecosystem through valuable information and knowledge spread.

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