Alibaba has announced that its finance arm, Ant Financial, will set up a private internet bank in June.
Ant Financial will hold a 30 per cent interest in MYbank, while the Shanghai-based Fosun Group will have a 25 per cent stake, China’s largest auto parts supplier Wanxiang Group will have an 18 per cent holding and Ningbo Jinrun Asset Management will own 16 per cent.
In addition to banking services, MYbank is expected to provide loans, insurance, payment systems and investment services to domestic customers, according to Reuters.
In late September China’s banking regulator approved the establishment of two private banks, including Hangzhou-based MYbank, and gave them six months to set up operations.
The approval by the China Banking Regulatory Commission demonstrates the government’s efforts to expand financial reform and support the country’s small and micro businesses.
Ant Financial runs Alipay, the payment method of choice on Alibaba’s e-commerce site and China’s largest online payments system. Alipay settled CNY4.82 trillion ($784 billion) in transactions in the first half of 2014 and is seen as one of Alibaba’s most valuable assets.
Ant Financial closed a deal in February for a 25 per cent stake in One97 Communications, which runs India’s leading mobile payments firm Paytm.
Alibaba co-founder and chairman Jack Ma said last November that the company was looking at listing Ant Financial on a stock market in China, but no additional details have surfaces since that statement.