AntFinancial (formerly known as Alipay) has struck a deal with Telenor Microfinance bank worth USD 184.5m. For a 45% stake in Telenor Microfinance Bank, Ant Financial has shown commitment for future endeavours in mobile payments and digital financial services.

Alipay was found in 2004,  and later rebranded into Ant Financial Services Group in 2014. Ant Financial is an affiliate company of the Chinese Alibaba Group. It deals in payments, lending, insurance, wealth management, credit risk control and cloud computing. According to Economist, Ant Financial is the most valuable fintech company in the world.

Ant Financial (AliPay) is 16 times larger than PayPal – Economist

“Partnering with a world leading payment provider like Ant Financial will strengthen Telenor Microfinance Bank’s future payment platform and set new standards in the digital banking business in Pakistan. The establishment of this partnership is well in-line with the expressed Telenor strategy of focusing our financial services efforts in emerging markets, making sure that we’re able to  build and modernize the businesses in line with customer needs. I’m truly excited about the opportunities this partnership brings for Telenor Microfinance Bank going forward,” says Sigve Brekke, CEO of Telenor Group.

“Ant Financial is pleased to be in this strategic partnership with Telenor Group.  Alipay’s technologies make us uniquely placed to achieve our mission of bringing the world equal opportunities. Today, we are very happy to share our technology knowhow with Telenor Microfinance Bank to bring improved user experience on the Easypaisa mobile payment platform, as well as provide inclusive financial services in a transparent, safe, low cost and efficient way to the unbanked and underbanked population in Pakistan,” said Eric Jing, CEO of Ant Financial.

 

Alipay, China’s leading third-party mobile and online payment solution, has bought undisclosed number of shares in Telenor Bank, Pakistan. Alipay has currently more than 600 million registered users and in 2018, Alipay added Ripple to their backend so that it could speed up payment processes. It operates with more than 65 financial institutions including Visa and MasterCard.

About Telenor Bank: “Telenor Microfinance Bank Limited, is the first scheduled microfinance bank in Pakistan. We have a distribution network of 75000 agents and 176 branches nationwide. Telenor Microfinance Bank provides micro‐finance and related financial services to the less privileged and unbanked segment of the society, with an aim to contribute towards poverty eradication under the Microfinance Institution ordinance, 2001.”

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