Alipay is partnering with Israel Credit Cards (ICC, CAL) and OneBill to launch its payments service platform in Israel.
Alipay currently has more than 520 million Chinese users, and has been working overtime to expand globally. As of now, the payment method is accepted in 70 countries and supports transactions in 14 major currencies. The platform has more than 500 million registered users and plans to exceed 2 billion within the next decade as it expands its global reach.
But instead of expanding to take on its competition, Alipay is aiming to make the payments process easier for its Chinese customers, who are used to paying for everything with their phones. When they travel abroad, they often struggle to use cash or a credit card.
This latest collaboration makes Israel the first nation in the Middle East to support Alipay. Retailers can now accept payments through Alipay from Chinese tourists visiting Israel, according to Electronic Payments International.
“The significant increase in Chinese tourism made us realize that we had to move quickly, and in less than six months we are announcing today the launch of Alipay’s wallet platform in Israel,” said CAL CEO Doron Sapir.
Jewelry chain store Diamond Mines has already started accepting Alipay payments. National Airline EL AL and James Richardson duty-free chain stores will soon follow suit.
“Chinese travelers are seeking to travel and pay with only their mobile phone when they are abroad – just as they do when they are in China. So, we are excited to see our partners bringing Alipay to the Middle East for Israeli experiences, local shops and in-flight payments,” said Alipay’s head of EMEA, Li Wang.