Seven-Eleven Japan Co. said Monday it will start selling life insurance at its over 20,000 outlets nationwide, the first such case at a convenience store, as the need for contactless sales grow due to the new coronavirus pandemic.

Japan's largest convenience store chain will start selling cancer insurance from Mitsui Sumitomo Aioi Life Insurance Co. from June 16, in addition to its group insurer's four programs covering car, bicycle and leisure activities that it currently handles.

A customer can apply for the cancer insurance through a multi-function copier machine installed at a Seven-Eleven outlet and also pay for it at the store's cashier. The customer can consult a qualified salesperson 24 hours a day by telephone to ask questions about the product.

The customer can also complete most of the process beforehand by using a smartphone or personal computer and preregistering online.

The wholly owned unit of MS&AD Insurance Group Holdings Inc. hopes to expand its sales channels at a time when the new coronavirus has made it difficult for their salespeople to visit homes or meet customers in person.

Seven-Eleven said it hopes to achieve some 60,000 new contracts by next March. It remains to be seen whether customers will sign a life insurance contract without meeting a salesperson, as such products, compared to liability insurance, usually requires detailed explanations depending on the individual's health needs.