Japan's Seven Bank to tap DBS' money remittance network in new deal

TOKYO – DBS Bank signed an agreement on Wednesday (Sept 30) to provide its money remittance platform to Japan’s Seven Bank, in the second such arrangement for the Singapore bank.

Seven Bank President Yasuaki Funatake said that tapping DBS’ digital remittance system will enable it to reduce costs for its retail customers, who will be able to send money abroad at any time.

Noting that the foreign resident population in Japan has been increasing, Mr Funatake expected demand for the remittance service, first introduced in 2011, to go up.

Mr Sim S. Lim, DBS Bank group head of wealth management and consumer banking, noted that the Covid-19 pandemic has catalysed work-style reforms worldwide, and that it was a “win-win situation” for DBS to partner Seven Bank in building its digital ecosystem.

DBS handles an average of S$12 billion in money remittance yearly, compared to Seven Bank’s 65.4 billion yen (S$847 million) last year.

A DBS spokesman told The Straits Times that DBS Remit is available to DBS customers in Singapore, Hong Kong, India and Indonesia, enabling remittance to over 50 countries in 17 currencies.

Seven Bank’s adoption of DBS Remit’s platform, she added, will allow it to “provide this same outbound remittance distribution capabilities for its retail customers”.

This is the second time DBS is providing its application programming interface (API) to a foreign bank, following an undisclosed Asean bank.

Seven Bank will first begin providing remittance services to Vietnam following regulatory approval, before expanding to other countries.

Seven Bank’s customers can open an account via a mobile app, which they can use to remit funds deposited at the more than 25,000 Seven Bank ATMs in Japan. The money is then remitted via the network provided by DBS Bank.

Seven Global Remit representative director Yasuharu Ueki noted that the average cost to remit money from Japan is 9.56 per cent of the sum sent abroad.

While Seven Bank charges 4.1 per cent, it expects such fees to decrease to under 3 per cent with the use of DBS’ system.

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