What if…?

In 1955 in Osaka, Japan, Tamotsu Kamihigashi was providing engineering field support for customers of NCR in Japan, when asking “what if….” led him to found his own company. Sixty years later, that spirit of customer support and innovation still guides the organization. Since then, Japan Cash Machine Company, also known as JCM Global, has grown to more than 600 employees worldwide with 12 offices in seven countries, and is publicly traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

From what started as a company solely focused on manufacturing and service for cash register machines has grown to where today JCM Global provides leading transaction technologies in a wide range of industries including banking, gaming, kiosk, retail and transportation on six continents.

JCM is still asking “what if…”, and the company continues to invest in development of innovative applications for the casino industry to deliver “outside-the-box” solutions for today’s integrated industry and multi-dimensional players. Working in close collaboration with OEMs and system providers, JCM is leading the industry with forward-looking solutions that are better, smarter, faster and more integrated, and go even further to help operators make connections with their customers.

In fact it was a simple question of “What if” that brought JCM into the gaming industry in the first place. “What if we put a bill validator on (and later inside) a slot machine?” That led to a revolution in how players and operators viewed a slot machine, and operator revenue and security increased because of it.

That first product was called the DVD145, and it was only developed for use in the U.S. However, JCM’s development partner IGT wanted to introduce it worldwide. That’s when JCM began to understand that is new innovation could lead the company to develop a bill acceptor that would be have global acceptance. That resulted in the landmark WBA (World Bill Acceptor), initially deployed in the U.S. and Europe.

In the early 1990s a question sparked innovation, and by the end of the decade, it was an enormous challenge to find a slot machine anywhere in the field that was not equipped with an embedded bill validator.

Never satisfied to rest on the past, JCM’s teams innovated again, creating the next generation of bill validators, the Universal Bill Acceptor (UBA®), what was faster and even more secure than its predecessors.

Throughout it all, JCM has always worked closely with key stakeholders across the gaming industry, and the company continuously solicits feedback from operators to discover any pain points that arise as the industry evolves. Those close working relationships have led to the development and evolution of products and technologies such as intelligent cash boxes, promotional couponing, and complete note scanning, front and back. And the company has earned numerous patents along the way.

Its deep portfolio of products reads like an all-star sports team and includes a line of award-winning products that set global standards and continually raise the bar, including iVIZION, the Intelligent Cash Box (ICB®), FutureLogic’s GEN2® and GEN2 Universal® printers, the Ticket2Go™ post-market TITO solution, and the TableXchange® and PromoNet® systems products.

Now as the content in EGMs and the EGMs themselves are evolving, so is the need to consider ways to generate additional revenue from existing devices and systems. JCM believes the slot machine can be utilised in new ways to unlock greater value for both the operator and the player.

This new “what if…” has sparked a renewed spirit of cooperation between JCM, OEM, CMS provider, operators, and jurisdictional regulators. In that cooperative effort, JCM is exploring many new features that take full advantage of the existing CMS’ and EGM’s combined computing power to deliver more options to the player and greater value to the operator.

The goal today for JCM, as it has been since asking that first “what if…” more than 60 years ago, is to deliver an ever-greater player experience, while maintaining the highest level of security and accountability for operators and regulators. That spirit of innovation allows JCM to continue to take operators and their players beyond mere transactions, to building strong connections.

Somewhere in the world, every day of the year, someone at JCM is asking “what if…” And so the innovation continues.

JCM milestones

1974: JCM begins to manufacture and sell electronic cash registers

1986: JCM begins to manufacture and sell US dollar bill validators

1988: JCM releases world’s first side-mounted bill validators for gaming devices

1990: JCM partners with IGT to imbed bill validators in video lottery machines

2001: JCM forges relationship with US Dept. of Treasury and begins consulting on currency and anti-counterfeiting measures

2003: JCM launched first Intelligent Cash Box (ICB®) in a gaming application

2004: JCM brings first note recycler in vending to market

2005: JCM introduces the Universal Bill Acceptor (UBA®) introduced, receives patent

2010: iVIZION® introduced, along with the first total image capture of a note or ticket at commercial resolution

2014: JCM acquires FutureLogic, dramatically expanding product portfolio