Alipay was launched in 2004 as a way for the customers of his Alibaba Group to more easily buy goods online. Now its parent company may be worth $US75 billion ($99 billion), or more than Wall Street banking giant Goldman Sachs.
That’s the conclusion of Elinor Leung, the head of telecom and Internet research at CLSA in Hong Kong.
“Alipay has a very strong leadership in terms of online payment ecosystem,” Leung said. “Alipay is not just for payment.” It is also a “big distribution platform for Ant Financial’s other products.”
The company could grow to $US100 billion in two years, as the current valuation doesn’t include growth brought in by insurance, credit scoring and cloud computing, Leung said.
Ant is controlled by Alibaba Chairman Jack Ma and Alibaba would benefit from such an IPO through either an option to buy a one third stake or a one-time payment.