Fintech & Ecommerce

Ant Group Partners Central Retail Corporation to Launch Alipay+ in Thailand

The partnership aims to target Asian tourists travelling to Thailand and shopping at brands under Central Retail, providing them with convenient checkout methods via Alipay+ with their local mobile wallet

Ant Group Partners Central Retail Corporation to Launch Alipay+ in Thailand

Thailand-based retailer Central Retail Corporation has partnered with China-based financial technology provider Ant Group to launch Alipay+ at its stores. The move is supposed to enhance convenience for Asian tourists from the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong SAR, Malaysia and South Korea.

With the help of Alipay+, the retailer’s international customers can now easily make digital payments via their local digital wallet, including Alipay (Chinese mainland), AlipayHK (Hong Kong SAR), Touch ‘n Go eWallet (Malaysia) and Kakao Pay (South Korea). That eliminates the necessity to carry cash or exchange local money for Thai currency.

The new payment method will function in over 3,000 stores in Thailand under the Central Retail brand. Those include Central and Robinson Department Stores, Supersports, Tops, Power Buy, B2S, OfficeMate, Matsukiyo, and Tops Vita and Muji.

Beside the increased convenience of cashless payments for Asian tourists in Thailand, Alipay+ users can also receive promotions and special privileges from Central Retail and international mobile wallet providers involved in the project.

As a business partner, Central Retail also gets a range of benefits. When Alipay first expanded to Thailand in May, Ant Group announced that local Thai businesses can potentially leverage additional payments and marketing solutions, such as the digitalisation of service operations, digital marketing efficiency and customer experience enhancement, provided by Ant Group in partnership with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT).

The tool set also includes the Alipay+ D-store. The latter enables merchants to build digital stores in the form of mini programmes, leveraging the potential of e-commerce to reach and engage tourists.

The move is expected to facilitate shopping for the growing number of tourists. It is estimated that sales income from international travellers in Thailand increased to almost 200% compared to the same period last year and by 16% compared to the pre-Covid period.

In H1 2023, over 12.46 million international tourists visited Thailand. The total number of international tourists is forecast to reach 25 million people this year.

Nina Bobro

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Nina is passionate about financial technologies and environmental issues, reporting on the industry news and the most exciting projects that build their offerings around the intersection of fintech and sustainability.