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Alibaba's Ant Financial Invests $200m in South Korean Mobile Payments

Tim Maytom

Alibaba’s financial payments arm Ant Financial is set to invest $200m in Kakao Pay, a mobile finance subsidiary of South Korean internet company Kakao, as part of a larger strategic partnership agreement.

The agreement will see Ant Financial offer its digital financial services through Kakao Pay – to its 14m users in South Korea – by ‘leveraging the strength of Ant Financial in mobile payment, risk control, cloud computing and innovative financial services’.  This will lead to Alipay’s merchants merging into Kakao Pay’s system – increasing the number of merchants and their customer bases.

“South Korea is an important market for Ant Financial in its global expansion, and we see many opportunities in the market for innovative services and growth in mobile payments,” said Douglas Feagin, president of Ant Financial International.

Ant Financial currently provides its financial services to ‘over 450m users in China and beyond’. Its Alipay payment platform enables users to hail taxis, book hotels, buy movie tickets, and more, from within its app.