Spanish lender Banco Santander has introduced JCB merchant acquiring services in Spain after signing a licence agreement with the Japanese card issuer.

The agreement with JCB International (JCBI), the global operations subsidiary of JCB, allows Santander to accept JCB card payments at its affiliated merchants across Spain.

The collaboration enables 130 million cardholders of JCB to shop with Santander’s merchant network in Spain that includes hotels, restaurants and luxury retailers.

JCB International deputy president Yoshiki Kaneko said: “This partnership with Spain’s largest bank is a significant milestone in JCB’s mission to increase our acceptance footprint across Europe.

“JCB cardmembers can now enjoy shopping with a greater number of merchants in Spain, both online and at point of sale.

“With average transaction value in Spain on the rise for JCB cardmembers, we anticipate this partnership to facilitate growth for Spanish merchants, particularly in the luxury goods category.”

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Santander Espana Merchant Services managing director Ruben Justel added: “JCB’s growing cardmember base and prominence in the tiger markets will be of great benefit to our merchant network in Spain as we welcome greater JCB acceptance.”

Last month, JCB International partnered with EVO Payments to support JCB payment acceptance across the UK and Ireland.

This June, JCB also formed an alliance with French banking group Arkea to boost card acceptance network in the country.

With more than 200,000 staff, Santander serves over 144 million customers. Last year, the retail bank posted an attributable profit of €7.81bn.