Ant Financial tipped to be raising expansion funds

By Dai Tian(chinadaily.com.cn)
Updated: 2017-02-09 13:59:28

A logo of Ant Financial is displayed at the Ant Financial event in Hong Kong, China, Nov 1, 2016. [Photo/Reuters]

There's speculation that Ant Financial Services Group is in talks to raise over $3 billion (20.6 billion yuan) to bankroll its overseas expansion.

US tech media publication The Information reported on Thursday, citing a source close to the matter.

The finance affiliate of e-commerce behemoth Alibaba Group is likely to raise the amount ahead of an initial public offering, with the timetable of the latter undisclosed, the report said.

Since its establishment in 2004 as a PayPal-like online payment platform, Ant Financial has expanded into a financial technology empire offering services ranging from small loans and credit rating to investment products.

Rumors about the fundraising plan come as Ant Financial continues a buying spree, with US money-transfer company MoneyGram its latest purchase. The $880 million deal is expected to reshape the international payments landscape.

The fintech giant's acquisitions over the past two years also include EyeVerify, a US biometric authentication tech startup, and a significant stake in India's largest mobile payment and e-commerce platform Paytm, according to Reuters.

Last year, Ant Financial raised $4.5 billion at a reported $60 billion valuation, making it China's most valuable fintech company.

Company president Eric Jing earlier told China Daily that Ant Financial hopes to replicate its success in China in the wider world, and has a goal of boosting user numbers to two billion within 10 years.

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