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Alipay

Alipay

About bank

Alipay Launched in 2004, Alipay (www.alipay.com) (simplified Chinese 支付宝) is a third-party online payment platform. According to analyst research report, Alipay has the biggest market share in China with over 700 million registered accounts as of the end of 2012. However how many active or unique accounts this translates to is unknown, with Alibaba Group refusing to provide an answer. It is highly likely that this figure will surpass Paypal's 117 million active users regardless. 

Alipay provides a payment service called escrow, in which consumers can verify whether they are happy with goods they have bought before releasing money to the seller. This has been a significant advantage to the service as China's weak consumer protection laws have reduced consumer confidence in C2C and even B2C quality control. 
Alipay partners with more than 100 financial institutions including Visa and Mastercard to provide payment solutions for Taobao.com and Tmall.com as well as more than 460,000 Chinese businesses. Internationally, Alipay connects more than 300 worldwide merchants directly to consumers in China. It currently supports transactions in 12 major foreign currencies. Alipay is an affiliate of Alibaba Group. 
The PBOC, China's central bank, issued licensing regulations in June 20110 for third-party payment providers. It also issued separate guidelines for foreign-funded payment institutions. Because of this, Alipay, which accounts for half of China's non-bank online payment market, was restructured as a domestic company controlled by Alibaba CEO Jack Ma in order to facilitate the regulatory approval for the license. The 2010 transfer of Alipay's ownership was controversial, with media reports in 2011 that Yahoo! and Softbank (Alibaba Group's controlling shareholders) were not informed of the sale for nominal value. Chinese business publications Century Weekly criticised the actions of Ma, while Ma stated that Alibaba Group's board of directors were aware of the transaction. The incident was widely criticized in foreign and Chinese media as harming foreign trust in making Chinese investments.  The ownership dispute was resolved by Alibaba Group, Yahoo! and Softbank in July 2011.