Tencent gives Alibaba run for its money

After 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.
According 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