According to a report by CCN on December 5, the cryptocurrency plan of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG), Japan's largest bank, which has been widely reported, has been "discounted.
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According to the Nikkei Asia Review, the financial giant will instead partner with human resources company Recruit Holdings to launch a mobile payment business that uses the digital currency MUFG Coin as a trading unit.
Through this service, users can exchange money in their bank account for MUFG Coin. Recipients of MUFG Coin will then be able to convert these digital currencies into Japanese yen or any other currency denominated in their bank account. Bank accounts do not have to be held by MUFG.
MUFG Coin payment service will be operated by a joint venture
According to Yomiuri Shimbun, the two partners set up a joint venture in October. Recruit Holdings will hold a majority stake in the joint venture, and the largest bank in Japan will hold a minority stake.
The mobile payment service is expected to be launched in the first half of next year. Currently, the two companies are awaiting regulatory approval and are applying for a money transfer service provider license.
In addition to MUFG's bank lobby, Recruit's affiliates also provide mobile payment services. The HR company has Indeed, an online recruitment tool, and Glassdoor, an employer review site. Recruit Holdings also operates other Internet businesses in the hotel industry.
In addition to retail users, MUFG Coin will eventually be promoted to corporate customers. Although Japan already has very successful mobile payment services, MUFG will still rely on its extensive business scope to promote MUFG Coin. It currently has 34 million retail customers and 1.3 million corporate customers.
Abortion of MUFG stablecoin project
For more than a year, outsiders have speculated quite a bit about MUFG's cryptocurrency plan until MUFG turned it to mobile payment services. A 2018 report from the bank shows that it will trial its own stablecoin business starting this year.
But so far, the plan has not materialized. At that time, MUFG rival Mizuho Financial Group also planned to launch its own crypto product "J-Coin".
Following regulatory restrictions, the banking giant cut back on its ambitious MUFG Coin plan. Among these factors, the most important limiting factor is the Japanese banking law. It turns out that it is much less difficult to run a fund transfer business.