Wirex, a UK-based provider of cryptocurrency debit cards and virtual wallets, today announced that Wataru Kojima has been appointed as Japan CEO and Head of Asia. The move represents a significant strategic commitment by Wirex to provide dedicated Japan focussed deliverables to its soaring Japanese customer base.
Last month at Tokyo’s premier FinTech conference, FIN / SUM Week 2017, Pavel Matveev, Wirex’s Global CEO and Founder, highlighted the firm’s deep relationships with Japanese customers, who continue to be the company’s most active and enthusiastic supporters anywhere in the 130+ countries where Wirex operates.
Pavel Matveev, CEO, Wirex said:
“It is with great pleasure that I welcome aboard Wataru Kojima as Wirex Japan CEO, who will lead our expansion across Asia. His hire means that customers will experience enhanced Japan focussed Wirex programmes whilst still benefitting from our global community and services.
“Japan is a critically important market for Wirex and we anticipate several opportunities for customers to make the most of their Wirex card. Yen denominated cards are in the pipeline and we are rapidly introducing new features – such as support for Ether, Dash and Ripple – to provide customers with the greatest flexibility to spend cryptocurrencies in shops and online anywhere you see the VISA sign.”
Wataru Kojima, Japan CEO, joins Wirex with substantial expertise in both traditional financial services and FinTech. Mr. Kojima spent the last decade as Head of Saxo Bank’s Japanese division, Saxo Bank Securities, a leading online trading platform. Prior to this, he worked for two Japan and UK based companies where he advised on financial systems development, sales, consulting, and project management.
Wataru Kojima, Wirex Japan CEO, said:
“Japan is ahead of the curve when it comes to cryptocurrency adoption. In April, we became the first country to establish a regulatory framework for virtual currencies and this has increased consumers’ interest and market confidence.”
“In the coming weeks and months, I will engage with regulators and market participants to advance the needs of Wirex customers, who want to see much more availability and flexibility of cryptocurrency transactions.”
“I will also ensure Japanese Wirex users are able to make the most of their cards, whether they spend online or in the high street.”
Wirex provides a cryptocurrency personal finance platform, comprising of a plastic and virtual VISA card supported by the Wirex app. Customers can pay with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for goods and services – online and in physical stores – anywhere VISA is accepted.
In March, Japan’s SBI Holdings, invested $3 million in Series A backing for Wirex, a partnership that demonstrates a long term commitment to ensuring Wirex maintains its position as one of Japan’s leading cryptocurrency debit card providers. Back in March Wirex added Japanese yen support to its platform. The move was strategic for its push into Japan along with the Japan Payment Service Act law enacted this year which allowed for bitcoin to be accepted as an official form of payment.