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Ant Financial to merge with helloPay in Southeast Asia

Ant Financial has agreed to merge with helloPay, created by Lazada to process payments on its platform.

helloPay will be rebranded as a version of Alipay in every country in which it operates. Alipay is a payment platform owned by Ant Financial that it has more than 450 million users.

The rebranding of helloPay would mean that it now bears Alipay Philippines, Alipay Singapore, Alipay Malaysia and so on in every country where it operates. However, the two companies said the features and services of helloPay would remain unchanged, adding that the helloPay app will remain separate from the main Alipay app.

About a year ago Alibaba bought a controlling stake, worth about USD 1 billion, in Lazada. The acquisition of helloPay is Ant Financial’s third acquisition since September 2016, and the second in 2017. It acquired EyeVerify in 2016 and announced the acquisition of MoneyGram International earlier in 2017. On April 18, it raised its offer for MoneyGram to USD 1.2 billion.

Ant also entered into a joint venture agreement with Emtek Group for the development of local financial services, one of which would be a payment platform for the BlackBerry-owned messaging service BBM.

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