GMO-Z.com Coin to start offering virtual currency exchange services from May 24, 2017

Maria Nikolova

New Japanese regulations for virtual currencies like bitcoin have been amid the factors justifying the business rationale for the launch.

GMO-Z.com Coin (formerly known as GMO Wallet), a part of GMO Internet Inc. (TYO:9449), will start offering virtual currency FX services from May 24, 2017. In an announcement, GMO said it starts accepting applications for account opening from today, May 9th.

The rising trading volume of bitcoin and the new Japanese regulations for the virtual currencies (including favourable tax treatment) are amid the factors justifying the business rationale for the launch of the service.

GMO – Z.com Coin Co., Ltd. was established in October 2016 to develop virtual currency exchange and trading business. In November 2016, GMO started conducting tests for virtual currency trading services and since then the company has been preparing for full-scale operations.

This is not the first time that an online services giant such as GMO pushes into the virtual currencies market. For instance, in February 2016, GMO Internet sealed a business partnership with Tech Bureau to develop back-end engine for games based on Tech Bureau’s private blockchain technology.

Blockchain seems to be the the centre of attention for many companies in Japan (and across the globe) now. In the end of November 2016, Tokyo Stock Exchange, Inc. (TSE) announced that TSE, Osaka Exchange, Inc. (OSE) and Japan Securities Clearing Corporation (JSCC) were establishing a consortium of Japanese financial institutions to keep conducting proof of concept (PoC) testing and explore the possibility of applying blockchain or distributed ledger technology (DLT) to capital market infrastructure both from technical and operational perspectives.

JPX formed an internal research group in 2015 to study the applicability of DLT to capital market infrastructure. The research showed that DLT has the potential to transform the capital market structure.

GMO-Z.com Coin is set to harness the experience in the online services business of its parent GMO Internet, as well as the Forex trading know-how of GMO Click Securities.

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