Alipay sets sights on digital payments outside Asia as it teams up with Russia’s Mail.ru
Alipay, one of China’s dominant digital payments providers, has teamed up with Russian internet firm Mail.ru in an e-wallet joint venture to develop digital payments in the country.
The joint venture is Alipay’s first outside Asia, where it already partners with local e-wallet providers such as Hong Kong’s AlipayHK, Indonesia’s Dana and Malaysia’s Touch ‘n Go. Alipay is operated by Ant Financial, the financial affiliate of Alibaba Group, the parent company of the South China Morning Post.
Mail.ru will take a 40 per cent stake in the venture, making it the largest shareholder. Apart from Alipay, other partners include Russia’s sovereign wealth fund Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), mobile operator MegaFon and Russian international holding company USM.
“The new joint venture for payments will work to accelerate the development of Russia’s digital economy by upgrading the country’s digital payment services,” Mail.ru said in a filing to the London Stock Exchange on Wednesday.
Alipay, which has ramped up its international efforts in digital payments in recent years, said it looked forward to working with its Russian partner to “benefit more individuals as well as small and micro businesses together”.
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