Alibaba's Ant Financial merges with helloPay Group

Alibaba's Ant Financial merges with helloPay Group

HelloPay Group, the online payments platform used on South East Asian e-commerce platform Lazada, is to merge with Alibaba's Ant Financial and be rebranded into AliPay.

Under the terms of the agreement, helloPay will be rebranded as Alipay Singapore, Alipay Malaysia, Alipay Indonesia and Alipay Philippines.

HelloPay staff will join Ant Financial in its Singapore office, although all of the company's services will remain unchanged and the rebranded helloPay will remain separate from the Alipay app.

Douglas Feagin, SVP of Ant Financial, says: “There will be no impact to helloPay’s users and payment partners. We will continue to innovate and provide users with safe, fast and convenient payment services."

Alibaba spent $1 billion to acquire a controlling interest in Lazada in May last year.

The move is the latest signal of intent by Ant Financial to become a leading power-broker in the global payments industry. Yesterday the firm raised its offer for US-based money transfer service MoneyGram to $1.2 billion and last week teamed with Indonesia's Emtek Group on a mobile payments and financial services joint venture. The company has also made substantial investments in India's Paytm, South Korea's Kakao Pay, Thai financial technology firm Ascend Money and Globe Telecom Inc's fintech firm Mynt.

With an IPO in the offing, the company is burning through a cash pile of $4.5 billion raised last year as it aims to meet its goal of serving two billion customers within the next ten years.

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