Quadrac and Discover® Global Network transform Japan’s cashless public transit landscape

Posted: 11 April 2024 | | No comments yet

Masayuki Takada, President and Representative Director at Quadrac, tells all to Intelligent Transport about how the company’s collaboration with Discover® Global Network is supporting the advent of seamless and stress-free travel experiences on public transport in Japan.

Quadrac, Discover Global Network - Revolutionising Japan's cashless public transit landscape

Credit: Enoshima Electric Railway Co., Ltd.

Can you tell us when the collaboration between Quadrac and Discover® Global Network first began?

Our collaboration with Discover Global Network began in February 2023.

Can you please tell us about the characteristics of the services provided by Quadrac? 

In Japan, there are many public transportation operators, and each operator has different boarding and payment methods, making it difficult to understand how to use the service.

We provide a system for travelling on public transportation using contactless payment through a cloud-based service as a common platform in Japan.

We aim to create a common customer interface and create an environment where a single payment method can be used on various transportation systems such as trains, buses, pleasure boats and cable cars.

Japan is identified as a key corridor market for Discover Global Network Cardholders. How does Quadrac ensure that the enablement of transit operators gives cardholders the freedom to use their preferred card seamlessly while travelling in Japan?

We provide an environment where all Discover Global Network Cardholders can travel seamlessly and stress-free when visiting Japan, using public transportation and spending just as they would when shopping with their card.

Japan has been actively promoting the transition to a cashless society. How does Quadrac align its mission with the Japanese government’s push towards a cashless economy?

The cashless penetration rate in Japan is around 40% as of 2023, which is still behind the rest of the world, and the government is taking the lead in promoting the spread of cashless payments.

In particular, the use of credit cards on public transportation has been delayed, and travellers from overseas have voiced their dissatisfaction with the inability to use credit cards for transportation and consumption.

In order to achieve smooth travel and consumption for travellers, we are working to introduce and disseminate this service to transportation operators across the country, with support from the national and local governments.

In the context of the collaboration, how do you foresee the impact on Japan’s transit landscape in terms of embracing cashless payments and providing commuters with greater flexibility and convenience?

The cloud services provided by Quadrac can respond flexibly and quickly to the diverse needs of operators and users.

For example, a new fare service that replaces commuter passes, such as a fare cap system that has not been offered before in Japan, has already begun.

In this way, we believe that reducing the various burdens associated with ticket and commuter pass counter operations, purchases and payments will lead to the rationalisation of the public transportation industry as a whole.

Looking to the future, what innovative solutions or features is Quadrac considering to further enhance the collaboration with Discover Global Network and improve the transit experience for cardholders in Japan?

We aim to seamlessly connect people to get on and off transportation so that all transportation methods can be used in a natural way with a single card. On the other hand, we are considering various initiatives that utilise the cloud in order to stimulate not only movement, but also consumption before and after movement.

For example, you could apply a discount service or flat-rate service for Discover Global Network Cardholders.

We are also considering providing solutions such as providing discount services when using public transportation and using public facilities.

Furthermore, we believe that by accumulating and making statistics on the movement and consumption data of users, it can be used not only by businesses but also with the government to develop transportation and tourism policies.


Takada Masayuki - QuadracMasayuki Takada became President and Representative Director of Quadrac in June 2018. Prior to this, he was involved in development work at Sony Corporation.

Masayuki has a range of experience across various fields in development ranges, from software including OS and hardware to semiconductor such as leading-edge communication technology including high-sensitive GPS and image/audio processing cloud system leveraging AI.

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