Over the last few months, PayPal has been quietly gearing up for its expansion in China.
At the recent Boao Forum for Asia, China’s answer to Davos, the American payments giant said its strategy for China is not to challenge the duopoly of Alipay and WeChat Pay. Instead, it wants to focus on cross-border business and provide gateways both for Chinese merchants to collect funds and for Chinese consumers to pay for overseas goods.
It’s certainly a lucrative area. The market size of cross-border e-commerce in China surged from about 3 trillion yuan ($460 million) to nearly 6 trillion yuan between 2016 and 2021, according to market research firm iResearch.
But this space has also become crowded in recent years and PayPal may be late to the fray, said a China-based manager for an American tech giant, who asked for anonymity because he’s not authorized to speak to the media.
On Amazon, one of the largest marketplaces for Chinese exporters to sell online, there are already established options for merchants to collect funds. Setting up a bank account in a foreign country can be difficult for a small-time Chinese exporter, not to mention the high fees for remittance, so such merchants often seek third-party payments transfer solutions such as U.S.-based Payoneer and Chinese equivalents Pingpong and Lianlian, which charge a relatively small fee to deposit merchants’ sales into their bank accounts at home.
China has stringent policies for foreign exchange and electronic payments, but PayPal has already cleared the regulatory hurdles. In January, the American fintech titan became the first foreign firm to hold a license for an online payment processor in China after it bought out shares in a local payments firm.
Obtaining the government greenlight is just the first step. The appeal of PayPal hinges largely on what it can offer to Chinese e-commerce exporters, who are now flooding the likes of Amazon and eBay.
“At the end of the day, customers only care which service is the cheapest and easiest to use,” said the China-based manager from the American firm.
“The Chinese cross-border payment solutions have achieved impressive results in terms of products, scale, and fees,” the person said. “I don’t think PayPal stands a chance.”
Exporters who build their own online stores instead of selling on mainstream marketplaces may still find PayPal necessary as a tool to accept payments from customers, given the app’s wide reach.
As for cross-border payments, PayPal is competing with Tencent’s WeChat Pay and Ant Group’s Alipay, which have long been ubiquitous in China. Both e-wallets have been aggressively growing their global partnerships to let China’s outbound travelers pay at overseas retailers like they would at home. Those shopping for overseas products domestically often use Chinese-owned e-commerce apps, which tend to have Alipay or WeChat Pay as their payment processor. Credit cards never became prevalent in China.
Cross-border payments have also become one of Ant’s main growth goals, according to the prospectus of its now-halted initial public offering. While overseas businesses accounted for just about 5 percent of the firm’s revenue in the second half of 2020, most of that segment came from cross-border payments. At the time, Ant also had plans to spend HK$52.8 billion, or 40 percent, of the net proceeds from its IPO on expanding its cross-border payment and merchant services as well as other overseas functionalities.
“It depends on whether PayPal is able to offer even lower fees than Ant,” said a person who previously worked on cross-border wallets for a Chinese company. “But PayPal itself is not famous for low fees.”
Ford Motor’s India Head Anurag Mehrotra Quits After Ford Stop Manufacturing Cars in India
Ford Motor’s India head Anurag Mehrotra has quit the company to pursue other career opportunities, days after the United States’automaker said it would stop making cars in the Asian nation, taking a hit of $2 billion.
Mehrotra, according to his LinkedIn profile, has spent over a decade with Ford in India across multiple roles, including marketing, sales and most recently as president and managing director.
September 30 will be Mehrotra’s last day, a source with knowledge of the information told Reuters.
Mehrotra did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Ford India said in its statement it has put its director of manufacturing, Balasundaram Radhakrishnan, in charge of overseeing its restructuring in the country.
Ford’s decision to stop making cars in India ends its more than two-decade long presence in a market it no longer sees as profitable. The move will affect around 4,000 employees, the company has said.
Ford is the fifth major automaker to cease vehicle manufacturing in India since 2017, following exits by General Motors and Harley Davidson from a market that is dominated by Asian rivals.
Despite being in India since the mid-1990s, Ford has less than two per cent share of the passenger vehicle market and was using about 20 per cent of its total production capacity of 440,000 cars a year across two plants.
Ford said earlier this month it plans to wind down production at its western India plant by the end of this year and at its southern India plant by the second quarter of next year.
Theannouncement has upset hundreds of its factory workers, some of whom protested the decision this week.
Veritas Kapital Assurance Appoints Mrs. Oyindamola Unuigbe as an Executive Director
Veritas Kapital Assurance Plc, one of Nigeria’s leading insurance firms, on Monday announced the appointment of Mrs. Oyindamola Unuigbe as an Executive Director of the Company.
The appointment of Mrs. Oyindamola Unuigbe as Executive Director, Operations is subject to the final approval from the National Insurance Commision (NAICOM), the company disclosed in a statement signed by Saratu Umar Garba, Company Secretary and Legal Adviser.
Oyindamola brings to bear over two decades of hands-on expertise in the insurance and financial services sectors. She combines experience in entrepreneurship, underwriting; reinsurance; portfolio management; product and business development; enterprise risk management and sales and marketing; acquired across leading international and local organizations.
Preceding her appointment as Executive Director at Veritas Kapital Assurance Plc, Oyindamola served as Head, Business Development, South wherein she was responsible for overseeing business procurement and total service delivery activities of branches in the Southern region of Nigeria.
Her over 27-year career includes working as an Accounts Manager with Brokerlink Inc.; one of Canada’s largest brokerage firms; Primerica Life Insurance Company, Alberta Canada; where she developed key competencies in the areas of processes and procedures that conform to the international practice of General and Life Insurance,
Standards and Regulatory Compliance requirements.
She started her career at the Lagos office of SCIB insurance brokers and subsequently worked at Citi Trust insurance brokers and the Nigeria Reinsurance Corporation where she served as a senior manager.
Oyindamola holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Ife, Nigeria. She is an Associate of both the Chartered Insurance Institute of London (ACII) and Nigeria (ACIIN) and is a recipient of various prestigious international certifications encompassing general insurance, life insurance and professional risk management.
Fidelity Bank To Develop SMEs Capacity in Non-oil Exports Sector
In furtherance of its resolve to help Nigerian businesses build sustainable export capabilities, leading Nigerian lender, Fidelity Bank Plc, is set to host the 11th and 12th editions of its highly acclaimed Export Management Programme (EMP).
Launched in 2016, the EMP is targeted at preparing participants for real-time experiences in the international non-oil export markets and the broader export market at large. The session typically covers a wide range of topics including Export documentation, Selection and Implementation of Supply Chain Management for Exports, Application of Export Development Business Processes amongst others.
Speaking on the programme, the Managing Director, Fidelity Bank Plc, Mrs. Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe noted that, “As a leading supporter of small businesses, we introduced the EMP five years ago to bridge the knowledge gap in the export business locally and to help participants to compete effectively in the global export market. Given the success, we have recorded in the course of the programme and following the yearnings of potential participants, we decided to host an edition of the training in Kano for those who are unable to attend the session in Lagos.”
While EMP 11 is scheduled to hold at the Lagos Business School (LBS), Lekki, Lagos between 4 and 8 October 2021; EMP 12 would hold at a soon-to-be-announced venue in Kano State from 11 to 15 October 2021. The sessions would be facilitated by leading faculty from LBS, Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) staff as well as experts in financial management and exports.
Fidelity Bank has over the years demonstrated its resolve to grow the non-oil export side of the economy through strategic initiatives and partnerships. For instance, the bank provided over N32.7 billion in credits to businesses operating in strategic sectors including rice, dairy, poultry, oil palm and cocoa in 2019. The bank has also successfully leveraged strategic partnerships with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) under various industry targeted intervention funding programmes to enhance access to credit for eligible players in the agribusiness and non-oil exports space with the aim of addressing food security gaps and enhancing foreign exchange earnings.
“The benefits of supporting the non-oil sector of the economy cannot be overemphasized given the immense benefits that it provides to the economy and the nation in terms of providing much needed foreign exchange investments, increasing our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employment generation. This informs our decision to host the EMP regularly and we enjoin interested entrepreneurs to take advantage of this initiative to take their business to the next level,” Onyeali-Ikpe explained.
To register for the event, kindly visit www.fidelitybank.ng
About Fidelity Bank Plc
Fidelity Bank is a full-fledged commercial bank operating in Nigeria, with about 6million customers who are serviced across its 250 business offices and various other digital banking channels. The bank has in recent times won accolades as the Best SME Friendly Bank, Best in Mobile Banking and the Most Improved Corporate/Investment Bank among several industry awards and recognitions. The bank was also ranked the 4th Best Bank in the Retail Banking Segment in the 2017 Banking Industry Satisfaction Survey conducted by KPMG.
Focused on select niche corporate banking sectors as well as Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), Fidelity Bank is rapidly implementing a digital-based retail banking strategy which has resulted in an exponential growth in savings deposits over the last 3 years and a corresponding surge in customer enrollment on the bank’s flagship mobile/internet banking products.
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