Alipay parent company Ant Financial is set to enter a joint venture with media company Elang Mahkota Teknologi (Emtek) to launch a new mobile payment platform in Indonesia.
The service will initially run on BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) app, which has a userbase of 63 million monthly active users in the country and is operated by a subsidiary of Emtek under a licensing agreement. After its launch on BBM, the mobile payment service will be expanded to other messaging platforms, eCommerce services and merchants.
Emtek is one of Indonesia’s largest media companies with subsidiaries running some of the country’s terrestrial broadcast channels and popular social media platforms.
In a statement, Emtek CEO Alvin Sariaatmadja said: “Ant Financial has proven know-how in delivering payment and other financial solutions to a large and growing mobile audience in China and enabling its partners globally, and we are looking forward to replicating and creating this success in Indonesia.”
Douglas Feagin, president of Ant Financial International added: “This strategic partnership underlines our commitment to serve the unbanked and underbanked around the world and to improve their lives by bringing them inclusive financial services. We are achieving this by working with partners who share our vision.”
The deal is the latest in a series of moves by Ant Financial to diversify its business interests outside of China.
In February, reports emerged the company planned to launch a money service in South Korea with messaging company Kakao. During the same month it invested in Globe Telecom’s Philippines payment platform Mynt.
The company is also embroiled in a bitter battle with Euronet over a proposed deal to merge with US remittance company MoneyGram.