Ali­pay ex­pands pay­ment ser­vices in HK

China Daily (USA) - - FOCUS | BUSINESS - By DUAN TING in HongKong tingduan@chi­nadai­

E-com­merce giant Alibaba said it will launch on Oct 13 its on­line pay­ment ser­vice in Hong Kong in the lo­cal cur­rency.

Dou­glas Fea­gin, se­nior vi­cepres­i­dent and head of in­ter­na­tional busi­ness at Ant Fi­nan­cial Ser­vices Group, an Alibaba Group Hold­ing Ltd af­fil­i­ate, said the com­pany is now fo­cused on ex­pand­ing mer­chant ac­cep­tance of Alibaba’s flag­ship Ali­pay ser­vice in Hong Kong, and aims to sign up 8,000 lo­cal mer­chants be­fore the end of the year.

So far, only main­land tourists are us­ing Ali­pay when they buy things from Hong Kong. But Fea­gin said up to 20 per­cent of Hong Kong con­sumers are al­ready users of the main­land e-com­merce sites.

In Au­gust, Ant Fi­nan­cial was ap­proved as one of the first five elec­tronic pay­ment op­er­a­tors to get the stored value fa­cil­ity li­censes by the Hong Kong Mon­e­tary Author­ity.

The other four are O! ePay, the lo­cal pre­paid card Oc­to­pus’ mo­bile pay­ment ser­vice, TNG Wal­let and Ten­cent Hold­ings Ltd’s Ten­pay, and HKT’s Tap & Go.

Ali­pay is only per­mit­ted to con­duct on­line pay­ment op­er­a­tions. Fea­gin said with its new li­cense, it will try to first en­able lo­cal con­sumers to use its ser­vice in con­ve­nience stores and other off­line stores.

As a sec­ond step, it will file ap­pli­ca­tions to the HKMA for other ser­vices, such as mo­bile pay­ment at POS machines, peerto-peer trans­fers and is­suance of phys­i­cal cards.

Fea­gin said Alibaba is set to in­clude more off­line stores into its pay­ment plat­form, and to ex­pand Ali­pay’s mer­chant ac­cep­tance across Asia and around the world.

On Tues­day, Ant Fi­nan­cial also an­nounced its co­op­er­a­tion with A.S. Wat­son Group, re­tail and man­u­fac­tur­ing arm of the lo­cal con­glom­er­ate Hutchi­son Wham­poa Ltd, and Ocean Park, a lo­cal re­sort and theme park.

Start­ing from Septem­ber, Ali­pay ser­vice will be avail­able in more than 600 Wat­son re­tail out­lets in Hong Kong and some 100 stores in the Ocean Park, it said.

Fanny Ng, busi­ness pub­lic­ity man­ager at DHC Hong Kong Ltd, told China Daily that the com­pany is will­ing to work to­gether with such e-pay­ment op­er­a­tors as WeChat and Ali­pay, but still has the con­cern that most Hong Kong con­sumers now use only What­sApp and Face­book.


Shop­pers use Ali­pay to pay their bills at the Sa Sa In­ter­na­tional store in Hong Kong. Ali­pay op­er­a­tor Ant Fi­nan­cial Ser­vices Group aims to sign up 8,000 lo­cal mer­chants be­fore the end of the year in the city.

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