Laos’ Phongsavanh Bank to Start JCB Issuing and Acquiring in Laos
Phongsavanh Bank Limited (PSVB), a major private commercial bank in the Lao People's Democratic Republic, and JCB International (JCBI), the international operations subsidiary of JCB, the only global payment brand based in Japan, today announced that they have signed a license agreement for issuing JCB cards and acquiring JCB merchants in Vientiane Capital, Lao PDR. PSVB will start both operations from 2013. The signing ceremony was held in Vientiane today.
Madam Sengdao Bouphakonekham, General Managing Director of PSVB, said "Our partnership with JCBI is the culmination of business discussions and market studies by both parties for the past year. We are very proud to be the first direct member of JCBI in Lao PDR. PSVB will also be the first and only bank in Lao PDR to issue JCB Cards at the time we start issuing in the next year. We believe that the JCB Brand has a unique flavor which caters for specific niche market segments in Lao PDR. And we aim to be a bank of choice for customers in this region."
Mr. Kimihisa Imada, Deputy President of JCBI, said "We are very pleased to be able to strengthen our business in Lao PDR through the partnership with Phongsavan Bank Limited", while emphasizing the importance of Lao market where increasing numbers of people are coming from countries where JCB has a solid cardmember base such as China, Korea, and Thailand. Imada also vigorously expressed JCB's target as "Becoming the top card brand in Laos in the next three years" by pursuing a unique position as a Japanese company.
Through this agreement, PSVB will start enabling its merchants to accept JCB cards around July 2013 as well as acquiring new merchants where JCB cardmembers likelyvisit, thus contributing to a much more comfortable payment environment for JCB cardmembers visiting Laos.
Both PSVB and JCB are scheduled to issue the first JCB credit card in Lao PDR by the end of 2013. The card product will heavily focus on "Japanese uniqueness", as Laotian interest in Japanese culture has been increasing in recent years. JCBI is also planning a wide variety of merchant promotions and other privileges for JCB cardmembers in Laos as well as customizing its existing promotions in Thailand specifically for Laotians, as Thailand ranks by far number one in Laotian international destinations.
Phongsavanh Bank (PSVB) is the first privately owned bank in the Lao PDR. It commenced operations in 2007 and currently has 21 branches and service centers throughout the country. PSVB aims to be the best local Bank in the Lao PDR with an extensive network and to provide world class banking services to individuals, corporate and government agencies. PSVB recognizes the need to invest in the most advanced technologies as well as human resources in order to build a strong foundation. For more information, visitwww.phongsavanhbank.com .
JCB is a major global payment brand and a leading credit card issuer and acquirer in Japan. JCB launched its card business in Japan in 1961 and began expanding worldwide in 1981. Its acceptance network includes over 22 million merchants and over a million cash advance locations in 190 countries and territories. JCB cards are now issued in 16 countries and territories, with more than 77 million cardmembers. As part of its international growth strategy, JCB has formed alliances with more than 350 leading banks and financial institutions globally to increase merchant coverage and cardmember base. As a comprehensive payment solution provider, JCB commits to provide responsive and high-quality service and products to all customers worldwide. For more information, visit:www.jcbcorporate.com/english .