Alipay parent Ant Financial is set to prioritise partnerships with mobile wallet providers in emerging markets outside of Asia, as it aims to capture a slice of the sector in areas with potential for faster growth.
In an interview with South China Morning Post, Ant Financial head of international investment Kenny Man said he expected mobile wallet applications to be the “next big trend” in a number of countries across South America and Africa – leapfrogging use of credit cards.
Ant Financial’s mobile finance strategy outside of China has been centred on a mixture of striking partnerships in target markets within Asia and signing retail deals for Alipay acceptance in countries popular with Chinese travellers.
News of its ambitions in South America and Africa comes as the company mulls how best to spend a $14 billion in investment made by a combination of international and Chinese institutions in early June. At the time, the company said the cash would fuel its global expansion plans and increase its influence in new markets, though few specific details were revealed.
In addition to consumer mobile financial services the company also provides B2B technology, a sector it is rumoured to be centring its future strategy on, and holds a large portfolio of investments around the world.