Circle Partners With SBI Holdings to Push USDC Adoption


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Stablecoin issuer Circle has inked a strategic partnership with Tokyo-based financial services firm SBI Holdings to boost the presence of USDC in Japan.

According to Circle, the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between both parties was completed on Monday, November 27th. Beyond pushing for the adoption of USDC, the crypto firm plans to promote the integration of Web3.0 services 

USDC to Transform Japan’s Financial Landscape 

Per a Circle post, “Circle and SBI Holdings are joining forces to boost $USDC circulation and transform the financial landscape in Japan with $USDC and Web3 Services! This partnership signifies a major leap in digital asset innovation and a strategic expansion for $USDC in Asia.”

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This new development comes barely two weeks after SBI Holdings subsidiary SBI Digital Markets Pte. Ltd secured regulatory approval to provide securities and futures trading services in Singapore.

Circle Seeks Position in Japan

It is worth noting that the USDC issuer has been mulling the idea of venturing into Japan for a while, especially after the nation enacted laws that govern stablecoins. Notably, Japan passed its stablecoin regulation bill in June 2022 in a bid to enshrine investors’ protection but it was not made law until June 2023.

Jeremy Allaire, Circle’s CEO and co-founder once suggested to crypto media firm CoinDesk that Japan has the potential to transition into a huge crypto market. 

Allaire hinged his optimism for Japan on the premise that the nation permits the wide usage of stablecoins for cross-border settlements, foreign currency transactions, and global commerce. His thoughts towards Japan fueled his desire to expand Circle’s business to the region. 

Mutual Benefit For Circle And SBI Holdings 

With respect to the new partnership deal, SBI Holdings through its VC Trade is pushing to register as an electronic payment instruments service under the purview of the Japanese authorities. SBI Holdings CEO and President Yoshitaka Kitao expects that this will be a step towards mainstream stablecoin adoption in Japan.

SBI Shinsei Bank is billed to provide banking services to Circle during the period of their agreement. This service is to facilitate USDC access and liquidity for Japan-based businesses and users. On the other hand, SBI Holdings will adopt Circle’s Web3 Services solutions such as Programmable Wallet, blockchain infrastructure, and smart contract management tools.

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