Alipay has landed at business-only bank Tyro, which will become the first Australian bank to offer its customers access to the wildly popular Chinese mobile payments platform.
Tyro said it was working with several merchants regarding the launch of its all-in-one EFTPOS solution incorporating Alipay, with the initiative designed to improve Australian businesses’ access to Chinese visitors.
The bank said it would offer Alipay to more than 20,000 eligible businesses from the second quarter of next year, while it would launch in several locations before the end of 2018.
Alipay, which is owned by Alibaba Group subsidiary Ant Financial, has been quickly adding to its network in Australia since arriving in the country in 2016.
As well as providing Chinese tourists the option to make purchases in Australia using in their own currency, Alipay allows retailers the opportunity to attract shoppers by providing discounts or vouchers.
Earlier this year, Alipay entered a deal with payments providers Smartpay and Incentiapay, giving up to 57,000 retailers the opportunity to cash in on big-spending Chinese tourists, who are expected to spend more than $13 billion in Australia in 2018.
Alipay also has an agreement in place with Cabcharge, which offers the facility in more than 20,000 taxis across Australia, alongside a deal with Quest Payment Systems, which has around 8,000 merchants that can use Alipay.
Bank of New Zealand became the first financial institution in Australia or New Zealand to offer Alipay payment facilities to its merchant partners in July.
Alipay also recently launched an innovative program allowing Melbourne buskers to use the platform to accept payments from locals and Chinese visitors.
In China, more than 870 million people use the platform, while more than 65 per cent of Chinese tourists use Alipay while travelling, according to data from Nielsen.
Alipay Australia and New Zealand country manager George Lawson said banks were a critical component of the group’s Australian expansion.
“(Banks) allows us to switch on our technology for thousands of merchants simultaneously through their existing payment terminals,” Mr Lawson said.
“Australian businesses have been calling out for their banks to partner with Alipay to improve their exposure to the rapidly expanding Chinese visitor market so it’s pleasing to see Tyro take the lead on this and give their merchants access to new customers and incremental revenues.”
Tyro chief executive Robbie Cooke said the Alipay initiative was particularly exciting for businesses in the retail and hospitality sectors seeking to better serve Chinese tourists.