MasterCard and Japanese telco KDDI have announced the launch of their ‘au Wallet’ prepaid card program, available to the 34m of au-brand mobile network subscribers from 21 May.
The ‘au Wallet’ card, obtainable without any credit evaluation and reloadable in-shops and online, will enable KDDI customers to pay at any merchant that accepts MasterCard, in more than 210 countries.
Takashi Tanaka, president of KDDI, said: "The ‘au Wallet’ card will provide Japanese consumers with seamless, convenient and secure payment experiences both in-store and at online stores.
"Through our partnership with MasterCard, our customers will be connected to a global acceptance network that enables them to shop at millions of merchants around the world."
Under the ‘au Wallet’ points program, cardholders will receive points every time they make a purchase with the card. Point will then be redeemable when paying ‘au’ phone bills or making other shopping payments.
Users will also be able to check their prepaid card balance at any moment with their mobile phone.
This will be one of MasterCard’s largest prepaid card programs in the Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa region (APMEA).
Ron Hynes, group executive of MasterCard’s global prepaid solutions, explained: "In this region, the gross dollar value of our prepaid card business grew 40% in 2013. The new ‘au Wallet’ prepaid card is the latest example of our commitment to a world beyond cash."