Alipay “will definitely go public,” according to Alibaba’s Executive Chairman, Jack Ma, who said yesterday he hoped his group’s finance services arm will have a chance to be listed on a Chinese stock exchange.
Mr. Ma, who was recently proclaimed as the richest man in China following Alibaba’s record setting IPO in the US, made the statement in a TV interview with the state-owned CCTV channel marking Singles Day. Taking place every 11th of November (11/11), it’s a made up holiday celebrating Chinese bachelors, invented by Ma a few years ago to copy the American Cyber Monday after Black Friday.
Alibaba reported a whopping $9.3 billion dollars in sales during the whole day yesterday (Singles Day 2014) in China alone, smashing its previous busiest shopping day of the year record. According to official data from Alibaba, around 278.5 million items were ordered yesterday on its platforms, seven times more than what Amazon sold on Cyber Monday in 2013. 42.6% of all Alibaba purchases on Tuesday were completed on mobile devices.
Alipay – 2.85 Million Transactions Per Minute
Alipay sits at the heart of Alibaba’s e-commerce empire as China’s leading online payment provider. Known by some as the Chinese answer to PayPal, the service settled 4.825 trillion yuan ($788 billion) in transactions in the twelve months ended June 30, 2014. At the peak of Singles Day 2014, 2.85 million transactions per minute were processed by Alipay.
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Alipay was launched in 2004 as a payment provider for Alibaba’s retail patforms, but since then has separated from its parent company and is now a standalone service owned by the tech giant. Alipay provides an escrow service, in which consumers can verify whether they are happy with their purchased goods before releasing money to the seller. This service was tailored to meet the needs of China’s weak consumer protection laws, which had previously reduced consumer confidence in online trade.
Alipay can be used to make online payments, mobile-based transactions, vending machine purchases, paying for taxi cab fare, and much more, as it provides payment services for more than 460,000 Chinese businesses. The service even offers a new online private bank that was approved by the Chinese government in September. With well over 300 million users and a market share of 48.7% of China’s online payment space, accepting Alipay is not merely a suggestion when operating in the Chinese market, it’s a must.
Emerging Markets’ Payment Solutions
In addition to China, other parts of the developing world are also drawing more attention from multinational firms, as emerging markets represent key engines for the global growth. This is clearly evident in the online forex industry which is focusing more and more on Asia, Africa and other growing markets.
Much like Alipay in China, all these markets have their own unique payment methods and mastering them is vital for success for companies coming from abroad.
In our latest Forex Magnates’ Q3 2014 Quarterly Industry Report, we showcased the payment solutions taking over the emerging market in an article called: “Get Paid in BRICS.” To provide brokers and service providers an insight into operations in non-Western markets, we featured payment solutions in Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, together constitututing over 40% of the world’s population.