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‘Japan’s Amazon’ Rakuten allows converting loyalty points to cryptos

Japan's crypto plans of turning loyalty points into digital currency is sure to turn heads and boost the crypto industry

Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten now allows users to convert their loyalty points to cryptocurrencies The currently supported cryptocurrencies are bitcoin, ether and bitcoin cash Rakuten said the move is aimed at reducing the barriers of entry to cryptocurrency trading

Originally published by The Block

Japan’s equivalent to Amazon, e-commerce giant Rakuten, is now allowing users to convert their earned loyalty points to bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH) and bitcoin cash (BCH) cryptocurrencies.

The service is being provided by Rakuten’s cryptocurrency exchange, Rakuten Wallet, according to an announcement Tuesday. One “Rakuten Super Point” is equivalent to one yen (~$0.0091) when converted to cryptocurrencies.

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Only regular Rakuten Super Points can be exchanged, the company said, adding that “Limited Time Points” cannot be exchanged. Users need to convert a minimum of 100 super points into cryptocurrencies, per the announcement.

Rakuten said the service is aimed at reducing the barriers of entry to cryptocurrency trading by providing an easier way to access the market. To get started, users need to have an account with Rakuten Wallet (registration is free) and then via the exchange’s app, they can convert loyalty points to cryptocurrencies.

There are limits on the number of Rakuten Super Points that can be exchanged per transaction and per month. In one transaction, “Diamond” members can convert a maximum of 50,000 points, while other members can only convert 30,000 points. And in one month, Diamond members can convert a maximum of 500,000 points and other members can only convert 100,000 points.

Rakuten Wallet is a licensed cryptocurrency exchange in Japan, registered with the Kanto Local Finance Bureau under the country’s Payment Services Act. Formerly known as “Everybody’s Bitcoin Inc.,” the exchange changed its name in March this year and started offering spot trading services in August.

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Rakuten said at the time that it believes “the role of cryptocurrency-based payments in e-commerce, offline retail and in P2P [peer-to-peer] payments will grow in the future.”

Rakuten’s e-commerce unit started accepting bitcoin payments in 2015 when it integrated its U.S. website with bitcoin wallet provider Bitnet.