Wirex appoints Wataru Kojima as Japan CEO and Head of Asia

October 18th, 2017 at 1:20 pm UTC · 4 min read

Wirex, the world’s biggest provider of cryptocurrency debit cards and virtual wallets, has today announced that Wataru Kojima has been appointed as Japan CEO and Head of Asia. The move represents a significant strategic commitment by Wirex to provide dedicated Japan focussed deliverables to its soaring Japanese customer base.

Last month at Tokyo’s premier FinTech conference, FIN / SUM Week 2017, Pavel Matveev, Wirex’s Global CEO and Founder, highlighted the firm’s deep relationships with Japanese customers, who continue to be the company’s most active and enthusiastic supporters anywhere in the 130+ countries where Wirex operates.

Pavel Matveev, CEO, Wirex said:

“It is with great pleasure that I welcome aboard Wataru Kojima as Wirex Japan CEO, who will lead our expansion across Asia. His hire means that customers will experience enhanced Japan focussed Wirex programmes whilst still benefitting from our global community and services.

“Japan is a critically important market for Wirex and we anticipate several opportunities for customers to make the most of their Wirex card. Yen denominated cards are in the pipeline and we are rapidly introducing new features – such as support for Ether, Dash and Ripple – to provide customers with the greatest flexibility to spend cryptocurrencies in shops and online anywhere you see the VISA sign.”

Wataru Kojima, Japan CEO, joins Wirex with substantial expertise in both traditional financial services and FinTech. Mr. Kojima spent the last decade as Head of Saxo Bank’s Japanese division, Saxo Bank Securities, a leading online trading platform. Prior to this, he worked for two Japan and UK based companies where he advised on financial systems development, sales, consulting, and project management.

Wataru Kojima, Wirex Japan CEO, said:

“Japan is ahead of the curve when it comes to cryptocurrency adoption. In April, we became the first country to establish a regulatory framework for virtual currencies and this has increased consumers’ interest and market confidence.

“In the coming weeks and months, I will engage with regulators and market participants to advance the needs of Wirex customers, who want to see much more availability and flexibility of cryptocurrency transactions.

“I will also ensure Japanese Wirex users are able to make the most of their cards, whether they spend online or in the high street.”

Wirex provides a cryptocurrency personal finance platform, comprising of a plastic and virtual VISA card supported by the Wirex app. Customers can pay with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for goods and services – online and in physical stores – anywhere you see the VISA sign.

In April, Japan’s SBI Holdings, invested $3 million in Series A backing for Wirex, a partnership that demonstrates a long term commitment to ensuring Wirex maintains its position as Japan’s favourite cryptocurrency debit card.

About Wirex Limited

Wirex serves 900,000 customers in more than 130 countries and is in the process of obtaining an e-money license in the United Kingdom. Wirex achieved $1 billion of transaction volume in June 2017 and has offices in London, Tokyo and Kiev. Wirex is expected to offer contactless bitcoin payments, contactless cards, additional currencies and new bitcoin-based financial products in the near future. Wirex is Japan’s most popular provider of cryptocurrency debit cards.

Wirex recently announced at Japan’s FIN / SUM WEEK 2017  that it has significantly disrupted the global payments industry by successfully integrating a multi-asset off-chain liquidity network – W-Pay – powered by smart contract technology, enabling ultra-low cost instant payments on a global scale. This means instant global multi-currency payment solutions, a fully-automated trustless blockchain environment for M2M payments with zero blockchain fees, gateway fees, or customer chargebacks.

About Wirex Japan

Wirex Japan Limited was established in August 2017. This subsidiary of Wirex Limited has applied to register as a virtual currency exchange business pursuant to the Payment Service Act, which the Japanese government amended earlier this year.