One of the major nuisances for foreign visitors to China might be gone as the country’s major payment giants, Tencent (operating WeChat Pay) and the Ant Group (operating Alipay) agreed to accept foreign credit cards on their platforms. Up to now, visitors needed to have a Chinese bank account to use those common payment tools in China.
Alibaba’s plan to split its US$200 billion company into six entities with IPO potential unlocks massive opportunities for investors, says business analyst Shaun Rein to CNA. It also aligns nicely with Xi Jinping’s intention to make China’s economy, more competitive by dividing up the Alibaba giant, he adds.
The main difference with the rest of the world is that in China social media and e-commerce merged into platforms, says China marketing guru Ashley Dudarenok. When you want to dive into China, you have to pick your platform and realize they are different from what you are used to, she adds. Most likely you have to pick one of them.
Alibaba and Tencent were high-profile casualties as the central government stepped in to regulate free-wheeling tech firms with growing financial clout. To the relief of consumers and smaller competitors, exponential growth in the tech industry is over, tells Winston Ma, former managing director of the sovereign wealth firm China Investment Corporation (CIC) in New York to Reuters.
Western media have been speculating about the whereabouts of Alibaba’s founder Jack Ma after he disappeared from the limelight months ago. Ma did get a dressing down from the government after he ushered criticism, says Shanghai-based business analyst Shaun Rein to AP. Ma is laying down, but there is no reason he is in real problems, Rein adds.
The massive US$34.5 billion IPO by Jack Ma’s Ant Group has been derailed by regulatory action, days before its listing, and that does not make the investors happy, says political analyst Shaun Rein at AP. The decision also might rattle Chinese entrepreneurs who were considering selling shares on their own country’s market, said Rein.