FinTech Deal: Alibaba Unit Will Invest $200 Million In Korean Kakao

FinTech Deal: Alibaba Unit Will Invest $200 Million In Korean Kakao

China`s Ant Financial, the financial arm of Alibaba Group, has announced its decision to invest $200 million in mobile payment subsidiary of Kakao Cor

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China`s Ant Financial, the financial arm of Alibaba Group, has announced its decision to invest $200 million in mobile payment subsidiary of Kakao Corp, a major South Korean messaging platform.

South Korea is an important market for Ant Financial in its global expansion, and we see many opportunities in the market for innovative services and growth in mobile payments. Given Kakao’s leading mobile platform offering and vast customer base, we believe we can bring Ant Financial’s broad experience in digital payments and technology-driven financial services to offer exciting and innovative products to South Korean customers.”, said Douglas Feagin, President of Ant Financial International, in a press release available at antfin.com.

The collaborative project will target the 7.5 annual Chinese tourists visiting South Korea. Alipay`s users will have the opportunity to use their payments app with Kakao`s network of 34,000 South Korean merchants, both online and offline, explained cryptocoinnews.com. According to the publication, Kakao`s payment platform charges merchants a fee on transactions, while Ali`s platform collects a fee from users who transfer over a specified amount.

As a Reuter`s source has revealed, Ant is currently trying to raise as much as $3 billion in debt to fund acquisitions and further foreign investments.

“Ant’s ultimate goal is to become a global payments monster – the biggest, broadest option for consumers.”, said  Ben Cavender, Shanghai-based principle for China Market Research, in an interview with Reuters (reuters.com).

“The challenge is facing strong local players around the world, so it’s cheaper to buy into these companies rather than burning money to steal market share from them.”, added Cavender.

Popular with its online messaging platform Kakao Talk, Kakao has in total over 48 million users, according to Reuters.

Kakao`s CEO-elect, Young-Joon Ryu, has  said that working with Ant Financial will result in “more effective and convenient financial solutions for  both businesses and consumers”.

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