Jack Ma’s fintech giant tops 1.3 billion users globally – ProWellTech
Speculation that Alibaba’s fintech affiliate, Ant Group, has become a whirlwind for years. New details have emerged recently. Last week Reuters reported that the Fintech giant could float already this year in an initial public offering that values it at $ 200 billion. As a private company, the details of payments and the financial services company remain scarce, but a new Alibaba deposit, which holds a 33% stake in Ant, offers a rare glimpse into its performance.
Alipay, the brand of Ant’s consumer finance app, claims to target 1.3 billion annual active users in March. Most of its users came from China, while the rest were brought by its nine e-wallet partners to India, Thailand, South Korea, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia and Pakistan.
In recent years Ant has tried to scale back his dependence on domestic financial products in response to Beijing’s tight hold on China’s fledgling fintech industry. Alibaba’s nemesis Tencent is considered to be much more reserved in the financial space, but its WeChat Pay app has slowly absorbed Alipay’s share of the payments market.
With a symbolic move in May, the Alibaba affiliate changed its name to Ant Financial to the group of ants. Even earlier, Ant was actively advertising itself as a “technology” company that offers payment gateways and sells digital infrastructure to banks, insurance groups and other traditional financial institutions, rather than being a direct competitor to them. In the Alipay app, users can browse and access a range of third-party financial services, including asset management, microcredit and insurance.
In March, Ant’s Wealth Management Facility facilitated 4 trillion yuan ($ 570 billion) of managed assets for its partners by offering money market funds, fixed income products and equity investment services. In the same period, the total insurance premiums facilitated by Ant more than doubled compared to the previous year.
In June, Ant’s new chief, Hu Xiaoming, set the goal for the company to generate 80% of total revenue from technology service fees, compared to around 50% in 2019. He therefore predicted a reduction in the monetary contribution of Ant.
Ant was born from Alipay, the payment service launched by Alibaba as a deposit service to guarantee trust between buyers and sellers of e-commerce. In 2011, Alibaba rejected Ant, allegedly to comply with local regulations governing third-party payment services. Since then the ant has embarked on several rounds of equity financing. Today, Alibaba founder Jack Ma still controls the majority of Ant’s voting interests.