Payment and lifestyle platform Alipay intends to support 10 million small and medium enterprises in Europe over the next five years with technology to empower them to reach more than 2 billion potential consumers travelling to the region from around the world.
The strategy to support these merchants was unveiled during the Alipay Partners Global Summit in London. It includes an expanded collaboration with European acquirer Worldline, as well as a new initiative to serve airport shops around the world through in-app mini programs.
“Our aim is to improve the way in which individuals and businesses buy, sell and receive payments, and to do this, we need to draw upon the strength of our partnerships,” said Alipay operator Ant Financial’s chairman and CEO Eric Jing. “Our growth has only been possible due to the network of partners we have established, and working together, we will make it easier for anyone to do business anywhere.
“Our innovative solutions will continue to help merchants in Europe better serve the growing numbers of tourists as well as e-commerce shoppers coming to the region from all over the world.”
Alipay is China’s most popular digital-payment service, according to market researcher Statista, with 87 per cent of survey respondents in the country aged between 18 and 69 reporting they use Alipay for their digital financial needs. Alipay currently serves more than 1.2 billion users together with local e-wallet partners in South Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan.
In a report published this year, Nielsen found that more than 93 per cent of Chinese tourists would be more willing to make purchases with their mobile phones and would even increase their spending if the option were available, while 60 per cent of surveyed merchants who adopted Alipay reported growth in foot traffic and revenue.
Currently, Alipay collaborates with more than 120 financial institutions in Europe and continues to add more and more partnerships with travel service agencies and other types of third-party service providers. This is intended to help merchants deliver enhanced experiences to their customers as they seize the growth opportunities in the global travel market.