On December 27, Japanese credit card and payments company JCB announced a partnership with Singapore-based blockchain firm Keychain. JCB intends to leverage blockchain to improve security and operational consistency in the payments space.
JCB is one of the leading credit card issuing companies in Japan and had net revenues of $2.8 billion in FY 2018. As of March 2019, JCB cards can be used in 23 countries.
Keychain is a technology provider building a data security solution for the financial, industrial, and enterprise spaces. It’s flagship product ‘Keychain Core’ allows partners such as JCB to develop applications with self-sovereign identity, data-centric security, secure workflows, contracts, and settlement and custom digital assets.
The critical benefit of Keychain is securing data that lives outside of a blockchain.
Established in 2016, Keychain’s investors include Monex Ventures, IDATEN Ventures and a few others. The company is headed by Jonathan Hope, who has about 15 years of experience in deploying trading systems in New York and Tokyo. He has previously worked with Bloomberg.
Keychain Core will provide JCB with data security, identity infrastructure and transaction provenance. A key feature is that the software development kit can be used on any blockchain platform, so clients have the freedom to build their applications.
This is the second such blockchain deal JCB has signed within a month. In December last year, JCB partnered with U.S.-based Paystand to build a blockchain B2B payments platform.