At Alibaba’s 2019 Investor Day held on September 24, Eric Jing, Ant Financial’s Chairman and CEO, delivered a speech highlighting the company’s recent progress.
Ant Financial has seen significant growth since it was spun off from Alibaba in 2014. As of the end of June 2019, Alipay and its local e-wallet partners collectively served 1.2 billion users globally, representing a 20% growth in just six months since the end of December 2018.
Following the introduction of Alipay’s globalization strategy which began implementation in 2016, the platform and its local e-wallet partners have grown by 260% in the three years since. The internationalization of Alipay remains a key priority for the company as it seeks to advance financial inclusion through connecting overseas merchants with Chinese tourists, working with local e-wallet partners to serve local users and bolstering the scope and scale of their digital e-commerce ecosystem.
Jing went on to elaborate on some of Ant Financial’s recent success, noting that as of the end of June 2019, eight out of ten Alipay users in China had used at least three categories of services offered by Ant Financial and its financial partners. These services range from payments, wealth management and micro financing, to insurance, and credit services. Meanwhile, four out of every ten Alipay users have used all five categories.
Jing also discussed Ant Financial’s progress in blockchain technologies, elaborating that Ant Financial has been sharing blockchain technology with partnering banks, insurance companies and asset management companies, as well as service providers from the public sector to increase efficiency while cutting costs.
He cited an example where insurance companies can leverage the technology to easily validate the authenticity of medical invoices, drastically cutting claims-processing costs from an average of 100 yuan to just 1 yuan, while also reducing the reimbursement process from days to just minutes.
Going forward, Ant Financial has developed a BaaS (Blockchain-as-a-Service) platform to provide partners and their customers with enhanced transparency, security and reliability in their online transactions.
The presentation coincided with Alibaba acquiring a 33% share in Ant Financial, which resulted from the initial agreement between the two when Ant Financial was spun off from Alibaba in 2014.