ACI Worldwide, the global provider of real-time electronic payment and banking solutions, and Alipay, is launching Alipay in South Africa, via regional payment service provider (PSP) Peach Payments.
This latest news builds upon ACI's long-standing work with Alipay, as well as Peach Payments, whose merchants already benefit from the flexibility and seamless mobile checkout delivered by ACI's Mobile Commerce Software Development Kit (mSDK).
Alipay, operated by Ant Financial Services Group, is the world's largest online and mobile payment platform with more than 450 million active Chinese users. Alipay allows merchants to effectively gain share in the world's largest eCommerce market through a payment method and lifestyle platform Chinese travellers know and trust.
City Sightseeing, which operates open-top 'hop on hop off' bus tours in Cape Town and Johannesburg, will be the first local merchant in Africa to offer Alipay as part of its mobile and eCommerce strategy, to capture the growing Chinese visitor market in South Africa.
China is the world's largest outbound tourism market, with 135 million travelling abroad in 2016, representing a 6 percent growth on the previous year. Adventure-seeking Chinese tourists are increasingly looking to African destinations, and in South Africa alone there was a 93 percent rise in Chinese arrivals in 2016.
"Alipay has been providing its users across China with easier, safer and greener lifestyles. Bringing Alipay to Africa gives African merchants another way to engage with and serve Chinese visitors," said Rita Liu, Head of Alipay EMEA. "We are happy to work with local partners to provide better travel experiences to Chinese tourists, and to create more value for local commerce."
"We are proud to build upon our successful relationship with Peach Payments, enabling them to be the first PSP in South Africa to give their merchants the ability to accept Alipay," said Markus Rinderer, senior vice president, ACI Worldwide. "Although Alipay has been supported through our eCommerce Payments solution for two years now, launching in Africa brings us to a new and exciting phase in our relationship, as we move closer to our vision of enabling universal connectivity across the payments ecosystem."
Peach Payments benefits from its integration to ACI's global network of more than 350 acquirers and alternative payment methods, with flexible payment infrastructure based on an open API. Mobile payment capabilities are delivered by the Mobile Commerce SDK, one of the cornerstones of ACI's API toolkit.