Japan’s consumer electronic retail giant Bic Camera officially began accepting Bitcoin payments on Friday at two of its stores in Tokyo. 28 media crews reportedly gathered to cover the premier event. Bitflyer which processes Bitcoin payments for the stores has also launched a campaign to give away bitcoin to shoppers using its wallet.
Bic Camera’s Bitcoin Premier
Bitcoin.com recently reported about the partnership between Bitflyer and Bic Camera for two of Bic Camera’s stores in Tokyo to accept Bitcoin payments. Starting on Friday, customers can pay using bitcoin at the Bic Camera store in Yurakucho district, and at Bicqlo Bic Camera store in Shinjuku East. The latter is a hybrid outlet with a giant casual wear designer, manufacturer, and retailer, Uniqlo. Bic Camera executives say more stores could also start accepting bitcoin.
“You can use Bitcoin at most 100,000 yen for one payment. Other payment methods can be used with Bitcoin together,” according to a Bic Camera’s promotional leaflet for Bitcoin payments. Customers can also collect reward points just as they would using cash.
The event has been covered by major Japanese media outlets including Nikkei and Asahi Shimbun newspapers, as well as a large number of media publications worldwide. In addition, Japan’s national public broadcasting organization, NHK, has also aired a segment of the event. Bic Camera executives expect foreign travelers to be among the first to use bitcoin for payments but the number of local Japanese users are also expected “to rise eventually,” NHK reported.
Ken Shishido, one of the organizers of the Bitcoin Tokyo meetup group, describes Bic Camera stores as a “Best Buy type of electronic shop.” At the premier on Friday, Bitflyer CEO Yuzo Kano spoke to the crowd and, according to a tweet by Shishido, he was “surrounded by 28 media crews at Bic Camera.”
Bitflyer’s Bitcoin Giveaways
Starting on Friday, Bitflyer is also running a campaign to give away bitcoin to customers for shopping at the two Bic Camera stores using a Bitflyer wallet. From April 7 to 19, Bitflyer will give the first 200 customers who settle with Bitflyer wallet 500 yen worth of bitcoin, the company explains.
Additionally, during the same period, Bitflyer is also simultaneously promoting its “Bitwire Shop” e-commerce service which allows customers to accept bitcoin on their own websites. Anyone with an e-commerce website or blog can accept Bitcoin payment just by inserting the Bitwire Shop URL onto it, according to a translation of Bitflyer’s description. For this campaign, the company will give the bitcoin equivalent of 500 yen to 200 people who register for Bitwire Shop ver2.1, and winners will be chosen by drawing.
In both cases, the winners will receive their bitcoin within 5 business days after the campaign ends.
How many people do you think will be using bitcoin at Bic Camera? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Bitflyer, Roger Ver, and Ken Shishido