Alipay, the world’s largest online and mobile payment platform operated by Ant Financial Services Group (“Ant Financial”, “Ant”), today announced that Alipay is soon to be made available to most local businesses in the Swiss town of Davos, thanks to a partnership with SIX Payment Services, a pan-Europe payment service provider based in Switzerland.
SIX Payment Services currently supports bank card transactions via Point of Sale (POS) systems at over 250 merchants in Davos. With the new agreement in place, these Swiss merchants will soon be able to serve Chinese tourists by offering e-payments in Chinese Yuan via Alipay. Davos is well known among Chinese tourists for its scenic landscapes and culturally rich village. It is home to seven sites that are listed as Swiss heritage sites of national significance and has seen steadily increasing popularity among Chinese visitors in Switzerland who enjoy exploring and experiencing its surroundings, the village, and local businesses. Types of merchants who will be offering Alipay include restaurants, bars, supermarkets and hotels, with all merchant information available in Alipay’s in-app overseas traveller service platform.
“We see technology as a tool to breakdown global borders and accelerate the free flow of trade and communication,” said Eric Jing, CEO of Ant Financial. “Alipay is committed to better connecting Chinese tourists abroad with local merchants. We help businesses to share customised service offerings that cater to the needs of Chinese tourists.”
“We continue to expand our reach into tourist hotspots, such as Davos to help local merchants grow with the opportunities that come with international travel. Through Alipay, merchants can engage and stay connected with their customers from the beginning of planning a holiday, all through to the journey at airports, planes, during the trip, and when they return home. For our Alipay users, finding and accessing local services, experiences and businesses allows them to travel and pay with only their mobile phone – just as they do at home in China.”
The plan to launch the partnership in Davos follows the China-Switzerland Year of Tourism, which took place throughout 2017. According to official figures conveyed at the closing ceremony, the nations experienced more than 1.2 million two-way visits between China and Switzerland in 2017, up 12% year-on-year.
With around 40 flights between the two countries every week, China has become the fourth largest source of tourists to Switzerland (after Germany, the United States and the United Kingdom) and those numbers continue to increase.
Alipay and SIX Payment Services’ partnership began in December 2016. Since then, SIX Payment Services has brought Alipay to hundreds of merchants in Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Netherland and France, including airports and cruises.
Alipay is available for Ecommerce payments and at bricks-and-mortar shops in 18 European countries, while tax-refund to Alipay is supported at airports in 23 European countries.