Japan Inc. frets about a possible 'Bank of Amazon'
Nikkei -- Jul 23
What if Amazon.com were to launch a bank? Consumers would likely welcome the move. Perhaps the big internet platform operator could entice its customers into letting it manage their money by offering points or discounts at its online store.

But there are parties that would not be so welcoming.

Like government regulators and the banking sector's current inhabitants.

In the U.S., the Amazons and Googles of cyberspace are unlikely to open banks anytime soon. Federal laws restrict nonfinancial companies from moving into the banking sector. In Japan, though, the legal path is unobstructed.

Seven & I Holdings, the parent of Seven-Eleven Japan, and Rakuten, Japan's answer to Amazon, own banks.

So the door to Japan's banking sector is open to big internet platform operators. But regulators, fearing potential risks, are reviewing this policy.

Under current regulations, banks could fall under the corporate umbrellas of big online platform operators in one of two ways: The holding company of a megabank or other financial service company could turn itself into an information portal, or a cash-rich online player could buy an existing bank.

News source: Nikkei
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