Tencent gives Alibaba run for its money


Tencent logoAfter dominating China’s mobile payments sector — which at $5.5trn is 50 times bigger than that in the US – Alibaba’s Alipay is under attack from internet services rival Tencent. Best known for its gaming and social media platform WeChat with its 890m user, Tencent’s share of the sector had risen to over one third by the end of last year, while Alipay’s — which was launched in 2004 as a PayPal-type service to facilitate payments on its Taobao ecommerce platform, had fallen to nearly 54% in Q4 2016 from a high of 71% in Q3 2015.
Mobile payment AlipayAccording to the latest data from Analysys, Tencent’s share had risen to 37%, a 21% year on year growth, while both companies are facing further competition from ApplePay, which launched in China early last year, although it does not yet feature in the top 10.
China leads the world in mobile payments, buoyed by a boom in online shopping and the relative dearth of alternatives such as credit cards.

Source: FT