Ant Financial's Alipay service has inked a deal with U.S. payment processing services provider First Data Corp to allow Alipay users to purchase from more than four million American vendors.
Souheil Badran, Alipay's North America president, said this will make Alipay ubiquitous in the U.S. and enable it to enter more countries. Instead of operating independently in the U.S., they prefer to cooperate with ecosystems with certain scale.
In China, Alipay and WeChat payment hold combined market share of over 90% in the Chinese mobile payment market. At present, Alipay hopes to provide a wider range of services to Chinese tourists who go overseas. Alipay's mobile wallet already supports credit cards of American Express, Visa, and MasterCard. So far, over 100,000 retailers in 70 international markets accept payments via Alipay.
By cooperating with First Data, Alipay will be able to lift its penetration level in the U.S. to the same as Apple Pay. Apple's chief executive officer Tim Cook recently revealed on a conference call that Apple's mobile payment service is now available at 4.5 million places in the U.S.