Chinese e-commerce firm Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA) has announced a partnership between its mobile payment service Alipay and Ingenico Group.
The two companies have identified a niche that they can exploit in the European mobile payment industry. Their idea was inspired by the huge number of Chinese tourists that visit Europe. Ingenico and Alibaba, therefore, want to launch a way to use the Alipay app to pay for products from any store. The partnership between the two firms will allow the integration of Alipay into the in-store payment gateway of Ingenico. The launch of the product in the UK is designed to target the Chinese tourists that are in Europe so that they can use Alipay just as they do in their home country.
Ingenico Group’s CEO Philippe Lazare stated that his company’s huge rate of success plus the ability to meet the requirements of some of the most demanding customers are part of the reason why Alibaba was interested in the partnership. Additionally, Ingenico’s mobile commerce division which is known as Ingenico Payments will also offer payment processing services for Chinese merchants. The mobile division already carries out online processing for Alipay’s cross-border transactions for international firms such as Etihad and Air France.
Lazare also stated that his company is expected to team up with Alipay so that his company can contribute its products, services and omnichannel expertise towards optimizing the user experience. It will also assist in boosting global sales. Alibaba has more than 450 active users but the deal with Ingenico currently limits the service to Chinese customers. Alipay’s head of international business Douglas Feagin stated that Alipay is currently working on gradually expanding its international business one step at a time.
Feagin stated that there are still a lot of opportunities to exploit with its core clientele base and the Ingenico partnership is part of that strategy. The two firms already have a strong rapport courtesy of the cross border Alipay services.