Alipay's advance into Europe is getting a boost from Germany's Wirecard, which has developed a mobile app with which retailers can accept and process Alipay payments through a QR code scan.
Alipay claims bragging rights to world-leading payment platform status, with 450 million active users run by Alibaba offshoot Ant Financial Services Group.
Wirecard says retailers will soon be able to download the ‘Scan Alipay’ iOS app from the app store. An Android version will follow in the course of this year.
To use the app, retailers enter the amount payable into the ‘Scan Alipay’ app on a mobile device - in US dollars, euro or British pounds - and then scan the QR code on the customer’s smartphone. The back-end processing is handled by Wirecard Bank.
The firm says the app offers retailers a simple entrance to benefit from Alipay payment acceptance for Chinese tourists and can also be used by large retail chains as a way to deploy Alipay as a new payment method without large integration efforts at eftpos terminals.
Rita Liu, head of Europe at Alipay, comments: “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.”
The new service follows on the heels of a recent deal with Ingenico, which is embedding the popular mobile app into its instore payments gateway for use on European retail terminals.