We have written about how Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba is building up its Alipay payments service into the PayPal of the East, mobile-style, as it started taking steps last year to prepare for the overseas expansion of the mobile payments company it spun off in 2011.
Alibaba revealed today that it has inked a few partnership deals for Alipay in Hong Kong and Taiwan. In Hong Kong, Alipay has reached an agreement with more than 300 Circle K convenience stores, as well as certain cosmetics and apparel stores, offering offline barcode payment services to mainland Chinese tourists. In Taiwan, Alipay has teamed up with the Hankyu department store, so all merchants in the store can accept payments made by Chinese tourists using the Alipay Wallet app.
It seems like Alipay’s first steps at global expansion are targeted at making it more convenient for mainland Chinese who travel overseas — but having the infrastructure and partners there could very easily see the payments service being extended to locals in the future. An Alibaba spokesperson also revealed to TNW that it is looking for opportunities to make the Alipay service available in South Korea as well.
Image via Mike Clarke/AFP/Getty Images
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