April 19, 2014
Last month, Rakuten Inc. announced that it was buying Viber for a sum of $900 Mn to improve its mobile commerce standing. On 17th April 2014, Rakuten announced that it will add China’s largest online payment service, Alipay, to its checkout.
Alipay is an online payment services provider founded by the Alibaba group in 2004. The system allows individuals and businesses to make payments online in a secure manner. Alipay’s users are primarily buyers and sellers engaging in e-commerce transactions. Alipay has partnered with some leading Chinese banks includingBank of China, China Construction Bank, Agricultural Bank of China, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China and Visa.
According to data from data analysis and online tracking firm iResearch, the total transaction volume by independent mobile payments services from China increased by 707%, rising to $201.2 Billion (1219.74 Bn Yuan) in 2013. Its surprisingly high. Alipay, a subsidiary of Alibaba, accounted for 75 percent of the country’s mobile payment market as of June. Alibaba Holding Group Ltd is a network of e-commerce B2B businesses constituting an online marketplace, shopping search engine, retail and payment platforms and more. It is led by chairman Jack Ma, whose net worth is $3.6 Bn.
Rakuten Global Market was started in 2008 and is parent company, Rakuten Ichiba’s, cross border trading service. Rakuten is a B2B2C marketplace where individual shops sell their wares to users. Out of Rakuten Ichiba’s roughly 42,000 shops, 10,000 shops currently sell to over 200 countries through Rakuten Global Market, says the company. Items sold on Rakuten Global Market are of the same price and quality as those available in Japan. Sales to overseas markets, including China, have been growing rapidly and the release of Alipay will allow even more users to purchase on Rakuten Global Market.
Alipay also provides solutions for Taobao and Alibaba.com along with over 500,000 external merchants for virtual gaming, online retail, digital communications, airticketing, commercial services and utilities fee payment transactions.