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April 25, 2017

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Ant aims to lift operations in Japan via partnership

CHINA’S Ant Financial said yesterday that it wants to increase operations in Japan by partnering with at least one payment firm, amid a rapid expansion in Asia and a US$1.2 billion bid for US transfer service MoneyGram International Inc.

Ant, the finance affiliate of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, has in the last few months completed strategic investments in payment ventures across Asia, including Thailand, South Korea, Indonesia and the Philippines.

“In Japan, there (is a) strong need of financial services from small and micro enterprises, and Ant is willing to share its standards and experience with local partners,” said a company spokeswoman. She declined to provide a timeline for its expansion plans in the world’s third-largest economy.

Ant also plans to double the number of Japanese stores that accept Alipay, the firm’s flagship payment app targeting Chinese tourists, to more than 45,000 this year.


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