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FINANCIAL SERVICES | Staff Reporter, Singapore
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Singtel's cross-border mobile payment alliance VIA welcomes Japan's NETSTARS

The partnership will add 100,000 stores to VIA’s 1.6 million merchant partners.

Singtel Group’s cross-border mobile payment alliance VIA has expanded its footprint to Japan after welcoming Tokyo-based mobile payment technology firm NETSTARS’ to its platform, an announcement revealed.

The strategic partnership with NETSTARS will reportedly add 100,000 new stores to VIA”s network of 1.6 million merchant partners across Asia.

Users of mobile wallets on VIA, including Singtel’s Dash, AIS GLOBAL Pay and soon Kasikornbank’s K Plus and Boost Malaysia will be able to enjoy the ease of using their home wallets when making payment at NETSTARS’ merchants, which span airports, shopping malls, food and beverage outlets, tourist attractions and transportation modes across Japan.

Also read: Singtel's Dash to expand mobile remittance services to Myanmar

“Through VIA, they will be able to pay instantly in their local currency, transact conveniently and securely, and enjoy competitive foreign exchange rates in Japan, and across the networks of all wallet members in Singapore, Thailand and Malaysia,” Singtel highlighted.

NETSTARS is reportedly targeting to grow its merchant base to one million stores throughout Japan by the end of 2020, benefitting visitors to one of the world’s fastest growing travel destinations, which in 2017 received some 1.8 million visitors from Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand, the countries which feature mobile wallets on VIA’s network.

VIA was launched by the Singtel Group in October 2018 to create a region-wide payment network that will enable consumers to securely and conveniently pay with their mobile wallets when they travel in Asia Pacific.

The Singtel Group said it plans to progressively expand the VIA alliance to include other regional associates Airtel in India, Globe in the Philippines, Telkomsel in Indonesia, working within each country’s regulations, as well as non-telcos. 

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