TOKYO -- As population decline makes the business environment tougher, Japanese regional banks are pursuing growth opportunities by partnering with online securities companies.
Shimizu Bank, based in Shizuoka Prefecture, and SBI Securities will announce such a tie-up Thursday.
SBI will let Shimizu Bank customers buy investment trusts online and also provide them with investment information. The online brokerage handles more than 2,400 investment trusts, half of which carry no sales fees. Shimizu Bank hopes this lineup will attract cost-conscious individuals in their 20s to 40s. Customers will also be able to open accounts via SBI's website.
This partnership has a precedent in Shizuoka Prefecture, where Shizuoka Bank already works closely with online brokerage Monex.
SBI aims to partner with other regional banks across Japan as well.