Skype chooses Smart Voucher technology to drive growth in Japan

14 January 2009

Skype Communications, the eBay-owned global voice over IP (VoIP) provider has chosen technology from Smart Voucher to power its Skype Credit programme in Japan. By extending the availability of Skype Credit in the retail sector, Skype hopes to rapidly increase the number of Skype users in Japan.

UK-based Smart Voucher, the company behind Ukash™, Europe’s fastest growing solution for online cash payments, already provides Skype with payment systems for customers in the UK and the USA. The patented Smart Voucher technology is used to power the purchase, activation and redemption of prepaid Skype Credit coupons. The coupons are made available in retail outlets and when redeemed online top-up the customer’s Skype Credit account, enabling low cost calls to be made to landlines and mobiles worldwide.

Now Skype customers in Japan will be able to get Skype Credit too, by purchasing coupons from Famiport multimedia kiosks installed at approximately 7,300 FamilyMart stores nationwide and operated by FamilyMart Co. Ltd. The roll-out is being managed by Itochu Corporation, Skype’s sole distributor to the retail sector in Japan for Skype Credit.

The coupons are available in 500 yen, 1,000 yen, 2,000 yen, 3,000 yen and 5,000 yen denominations or multiples of five e.g. a pack of five 3,000 yen coupons or a pack of five 5,000 yen coupons.

Mark Chirnside, Smart Voucher CEO, said: “Until now Skype Credit in Japan has only been available online using credit cards. The Smart Voucher system already successfully deployed for Skype in the USA and UK will now be used to make Skype Credit available via retail outlets to cash consumers or those with concerns about their cards online. Each day millions of consumers in the USA, Europe and South Africa have their financial transactions processed by Smart Voucher, making us the technology partner of choice for high profile applications such as these.”

Smart Voucher has been chosen by Skype, and other leading companies such as William Hill plc, due to its proven track record in delivering cutting-edge services using secure, reliable and scalable patented technology.

“Supporting Skype Credit in Japan is a great opportunity for Smart Voucher to extend its services into the Asian market and to build on our successful growth in the USA, Europe and South Africa,” concludes Mark Chirnside.

Become a bobsguide member to access the following

1. Unrestricted access to bobsguide
2. Send a proposal request
3. Insights delivered daily to your inbox
4. Career development