The Ants Go Marching

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Tippets by Taps #146: Ant Group's IPO, the new 'dine-in', retail market share gains, Bali and more. Enjoy!
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Don't let Ant Group's name fool you, it is anything but small. The centacorn formerly known as Ant Financial finally filed to go public, jointly listing in both Shanghai and Hong Kong, and sharing more details on the business. Founded in 2004 as an offshoot of Alibaba, the far-reaching behemoth has come to dominate the payment and financial services markets over the last 15 years. The scale and scope of the company make it far more than 'just another wallet'.

By the numbers:

Let's break this down. In the last year, the over 1 billion Alipay users conducted over US$18 trillion (with a t) worth of transactions. To give you a sense of scale, Visa and Mastercard combined? US$16 trillion. Alipay's payment volume already exceeds that of the two largest traditional card networks in the world, and that's without non-Chinese nationals on the platform (that approval only happened last November). Bigger than Visa and Mastercard combined? That's enough to make the business incredibly attractive. The crazy part? That's not even the part of the business where they generate most of their revenue.

In addition to being the parent company of Alipay, Ant Group has a technology platform - lending, wealth management, and insurance offerings - that accounts for 63% of its revenue. It manages almost $600B in AUM and has lent over $300B to consumers and SMBs. It also provides the underlying technology stack to financial institutions around the world, powering banking and financial services infrastructure.

Furthermore, the Alipay app has become a 'super-app' with over 160,000 mini-apps bundled and accessible to the 711 million monthly active Alipay users making it (along with Tencent's WeChat) one of the best application distribution…
Rishi Taparia
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