CARDNET Brings Modern Digital Payments to Japan With ACI Worldwide Collaboration

As payments across the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region continue to evolve, the payments software company ACI Worldwide has announced its collaboration with CARDNET, the Japanese domestic payment network, to modernise its digital payments infrastructure. 

The agreement will see ACI work with CARDNET to provide the latest digital payments technology and next-generation solutions to CARDNET’s customers.

While it currently processes around 30 billion domestic payments transactions a year, while also providing card payment switching services and 889,000 point-of-sale terminals to Japanese merchants, introducing CARDNET to new infrastructure will enable it to meet the country’s growing demand for digital payments.

While APAC has long been associated with the progression of digital payments, somewhat surprisingly, Japan’s adoption of the technology remains noticeably behind that of its neighbours.

According to Statista, the total transaction value of Japan’s digital payments segment is forecast to top $325.10billion in 2022. In comparison, the same data suggests that the total transaction value of China’s digital payments segment is projected to reach $3,497.00billon during the same period.

As divulged by JP Morgan‘s report, Japan’s lack of adoption of digital payments has little to do with access to financial services, as its own data indicates that 98.2 per cent of its citizens hold a bank account.

Going further into this figure, JP Morgan explains how Japan’s use of cash remains significant, accounting for 13 per cent of all online transactions in 2021.

Paying for online services in cold hard cash – impossible right? Not in Japan.

The country has around 55,000 konbini, which are convenience stores that accept and transact cash payments for online transactions. However, consumers must make the payment within six days of receiving their goods, and an ID must be presented to make the payment.

Reuters even described Japan as ‘the world’s most dedicated cash hoarders‘.

Although ACI Worldwide and CARDNET undoubtedly have big plans for Japan’s digital payments ecosystem, the collaboration will have to compete with a fierce attitude to cash that is unlike anywhere else in the world.

Japan has a solid cultural perception around the use of cash, believing it offers a superior and unmatched level of security and anonymity when making payments; a preference that, as the konbini have demonstrated,  is seamlessly facilitated within the country’s economy with plenty of cash-on-delivery options available.

However, Japanese merchants can rest assured that their digital payment services are in good hands. ACI’s agreement with CARDNET is the latest in a series of successes across APAC for ACI as the company continues its growth in the region.

Just last month, Worldline announced that it had joined forces with Casio Computer to shake up Japan’s ‘cumbersome payment acceptance ecosystem’ by facilitating card payments and cashless shopping in the country.

It follows a similar announcement earlier this year that Worldline had forged a partnership with Vesca to enter the Japanese merchant services market.

Leslie Choo

“CARDNET has taken a great leap forward in its digital payments journey and we are excited to be part of the drive to modernize its payments architecture and the Japanese payments ecosystem,” explains Leslie Choo, managing director, APAC, ACI Worldwide.

“As Asia’s digital payments networks become increasingly interconnected, having the right technology, collaboration, and shared vision will be key to staying ahead and providing unrivalled customer convenience.”

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