For companies that don’t have a base in China, it can be hard to sell products to Chinese customers. Besides shopping while traveling abroad, many Chinese buy foreign goods through domestic shopping sites. More companies are trying to bridge that gap by working with China’s online payment giants.
San Francisco-based Stripe is the latest to partner with digital payment platforms Alipay and WeChat Pay, allowing US merchants using its platform to accept payments from Chinese customers. Chinese Alipay and WeChat Pay users can purchase foreign goods in dollars without having to convert to the local currency, according to Stripe’s statement today (July 10). Stripe also announced its launch in Hong Kong on the same day.
The partnership gives Stripe’s merchant users access to hundreds of millions of Chinese customers, where the use of online payments services in e-commerce far outstrips that of credit cards. Together with WeChat Pay, the Chinese services make up over 90% of the third-party mobile-payments market in China.
Foreign companies are increasingly looking for chances to work with Chinese payment platforms. In May, Atlanta-based payments processor First Data announced a deal that would allow more than 4 million US merchants to accept payments made by Alipay, targeting the increasing number of Chinese people traveling to the US. In February, Citcon, a Chinese-funded Silicon Valley payments startup, announced a similar partnership.