JCB Sets its Sites on Smart Card Acceptance in U.S.

JCB Sets its Sites on Smart Card Acceptance in U.S.

Hires Influential Smart Card Industry Leader Julie Krueger

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 28 /PRNewswire/–JCB, the fourth largest global payment brand, has set its sites on broadening smart credit card acceptance in the U.S. To spearhead this initiative, JCB USA has hired Julie Krueger, former executive director of the Smart Card Alliance and respected industry expert, as vice president smart cards.

“Using our J/Smart EMV application, JCB has already issued more than three million smart cards and we plan to convert our entire customer base to smart cards by 2007,” Mr. Masahiro Omoto of JCB International recently told industry executives at the annual conference of the Smart Card Alliance. “Because of credit card skimming fraud in Japan, it was clear we had to move forward with smart cards and to do it quickly. Now we are focused on working with merchants and acquirers worldwide to help us fight this fraud issue. Our goal is to increase security for merchants and cardholders everywhere the JCB card is accepted.”

JCB’s expansion into the U.S. follows JCB’s successful rollout of J/Smart EMV cards in Japan, Taiwan and the U.K.

In her new role, Ms. Krueger will be responsible for securing a North American infrastructure to accept J/Smart-based smart card transactions. Julie joins Tac Watanabe in developing and maintaining key relationships with payment terminal manufacturers, front-end processors and acquirers.

“Julie Krueger is a great addition to our team,” said Tom Wright, executive vice president, JCB USA. “With her extensive contacts among POS manufacturers, processors and acquirers, Julie will play a critical role in establishing the necessary partnerships required for JCB smart card acceptance in North America. She also brings the leadership and experience we need to manage several pilot projects that are currently in the works.”

JCB’s first priority is establishing infrastructure partners throughout the Americas. One of the steps already taken is the recently announced JCB certification of Hypercom’s EMV kernel for ICE card payment terminals for use worldwide with JCB’s J/Smart credit cards.

In addition JCB announced a worldwide joint marketing arrangement with Hypercom to promote the acceptance of J/Smart cards and the sale of J/Smart- enabled payment terminals worldwide. The two companies have many mutual customers and complementary relationships with acquirers and processors around the world. Of particular importance to the America’s are customers in Brazil, Costa Rica and the United States.

“Half of the payment terminals Hypercom distributes in the U.S. can support the EMV certified kernel with the J/Smart application. We want to find additional ways to get acquirers and merchants to support EMV and the corresponding infrastructure within in the U.S. payment industry,” said Ms. Krueger.

About JCB

JCB is the fourth largest global payment brand and the largest card issuer and acquirer in Japan. JCB launched its card business in 1961 and began expanding overseas in 1981. Its merchant network includes 9.78 million merchants and spans 189 countries and territories, and serves 42 million cardmembers worldwide. As part of its international growth strategy, JCB has formed alliances with more than 320 leading banks and financial institutions globally to increase merchant coverage. In Japan, JCB has issued more than three million chip-based credit cards since December 2001. For further information, please visit http://www.jcbusa.com.

JCB is a registered trademark of JCB International

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