Alibaba is a force to be reckoned with, and its payment service provider Alipay is no exception. The leading Chinese company, along with its top rival Tenpay, are giving other payment service providers a run for their money.
The competition, experts say, has forced China’s payments market to turn to other business ventures to remain competitive. According to Want China Times’ Tuesday (May 26) report, the players are largely turning to small business finance.
Smaller competitors like China Smartpay are exploring alternative financing options. According to chairman Zhang Huaqiao, the company is now looking to focus efforts on micro financing and risk controls as it inches its way into the personal and business finance industry.
Last month the company inked a deal with Niwodai.com to launch a joint online finance and payment platform. Just days later, Smartpay inked another partnership with Haitong International to launch a cross-border finance management platform. In yet another collaboration, the FinServ company has teamed up with Digital China to gain access to the Big Data of China’s banking sector.
Going forward, Huaqiao also said that the company plans to strike new deals with companies and other entities like hospitals, a move that allows Smartpay to then offer insurance services to the clients of those partners. Altogether, reports said, the firm is looking to mesh its FinServ, payments and Big Data services into a single corporation that services consumers and businesses.
Reports said that Smartpay’s path hints at payment service providers’ need to diversify, and much of that effort has been guided to small business and personal finance. But if these smaller players want to compete with Alipay, they have a tough road ahead. Earlier this year Alipay launched its short term lending service for consumers, while Alibaba recently struck its own deal with Lending Club to boost access to capital to Alibaba buyers in an effort to increase buying from Chinese manufacturers.