If you have been thinking that PayPal is still the most popular payment system in the world, you are quite wrong. Because Alipay.com, a subsidiary of Alibaba Group, has outshone it to become the world’s largest payment system.
According to Wang Gang, General Manager, Merchant Division of Alipay.com, the site now has about 500 million registered users coupled with seven millions transactions every day, which is to the tune of 2 billion Yuan ($302 million). And these are more than that of PayPal. Quite interestingly, the figures also also exceeded the expectations of Shao Xiaofeng, former president of Alipay, who forecast that Alipay would beat PayPal in 2011.
At present the company, which started in 2004 has the biggest market in China. It also has its presence felt in many Southeast Asian countries, as well as in Europe and South Korea, and efforts are on to get into other overseas markets. According to Zhang Zhenghua, Senior Director, Business Development, the company has already tied up with more than 300 overseas institutions and big steps are on the anvil to launch the service worldwide in 2011, not only in terms of the number of business partners, but also geographically.
Meanwhile, Alipay’s rival PayPal has also experienced a steep growth of about 88% in China alone. It processes more than 2 billion dollars in the country, majority of which are from overseas customers. It also has partnered with another Chinese company UnionPay to stay head on with the Chinese Payment giant. And the partnership has also given the UnionPay customers a payment system that allows them to do online purchase worldwide.
Now with this great achievement by the Chinese company, PayPal certainly has to work harder to keep its hold in the world of ecommerce. It is also certain that most of Alipay’s overseas transactions come from Chinese buyers, who purchase Chinese clothes in other countries and the contribution from global markets is still small.
Having said all of this, PayPal is definitely facing a tough competition. Its reputation of being the most preferred system of payment may change with the scenario. But that remains to be seen. And with the backing of eBay, PayPal definitely won’t accept any easy defeat. That is for sure. By the way which one is your pick? Alipay or PayPal or neither. Let us know.