Alipay Europe Expansion Gets Help From Wirecard

Alipay‘s expansion into Europe got some help from Germany’s Wirecard, which has created a mobile app that enables retailers to accept and process Alipay payments via a QR code scan.

According to a report, Wirecard said retailers can soon download Scan Alipay, an iOS app, from the App Store, with an Android version to follow at some point this year. In order for retailers to use the app, they enter the amount payable into the Scan Alipay app on a mobile device and then scan the QR code on the customer’s smartphone. The processing on the back end is handled by Wirecard Bank. Wirecard said the app gives retailers a simple way to take advantage of Alipay payment acceptance from Chinese tourists. It can also be a way for bigger retailers to launch Alipay as a new payment method without taking on huge integration risks.

“Our customers have a strong sense of loyalty to the Alipay brand. We are sure that tourists will look to use this domestic payment method in Europe more and more often,” said Rita Liu, head of Europe at Alipay, in the report.

The move on the part of Wirecard and Alipay comes on the heels of reports earlier this summer that Alipay’s team is in negotiations with Wirecard over Alipay taking a 25 percent stake in the German banking software company. According to Bild am Sonntag, a German newspaper, Wirecard was in private talks to take an investment from the unit of the Chinese eCommerce giant. Alipay is owned by Alibaba’s financial arm, Ant Financial. Wirecard has not provided comments on the details of the deal but did confirm with Reuters that the company was speaking with partners (without naming which ones).