Apple has never made it a secret that they believe China is one of the more important markets, especially given the country’s population which is basically untapped potential customers. Now Apple has recently rolled out Apple Pay in the US and they are eyeing China next. Now we expect that Apple will have some hurdles to overcome, but partnering up with Alibaba could help speed things about.
This was revealed during Tim Cook’s interview at the WSJ Digital conference last month where it was suggested that Alibaba’s Alipay could provide back-end services for the Apple Pay system. Given that Alibaba currently owns about 80% of the market share in China’s online shopping, safe to say that partnering up with the company would reap all sorts of benefits for Apple.
This includes Apple taking advantage of Alibaba’s existing agreements with more than 200 Chinese financial institutions, as well as the hundreds of millions of consumers and businesses already using the Alipay system. Alibaba’s founder and CEO Jack Ma also seemed to suggest that a partnership between both companies makes sense.
Speaking with CNBC, Ma was quoted as saying, “We’ve had great discussions, and I think both are interested.” Whether or not these discussions will bear any fruit remains to be seen, but assuming it does, it will no doubt help propel Apple Pay into new heights that have yet to be achieved by Apple’s competitors.