British cosmetics powerhouse The Body Shop this week will accept Alipay at three of its London stores, through a new integration by Germany-based Wirecard.
The Body Shop is the first large retailer to use Wirecard’s Scan Alipay App enabling merchants to add China’s largest mobile wallet to existing in-store checkout options, Wirecard said in a Sept. 28 press release.
The connection goes live Oct. 1, coinciding with the start of China’s Golden Week, when thousands of Chinese tourists hit London’s shopping scene. Enabling visitors to pay in their own currency with Alipay should increase convenience for the estimated 100,000 Chinese-speaking shoppers in the U.K. who—together with tourists—routinely account for a “significant” percentage of sales at the Body Shop’s largest U.K. outlets, said Simon Coble, the retailer’s U.K.-based general manager.
To complete a purchase using the new feature, a Body Shop clerk enters the amount payable into Wirecard’s “Scan Alipay” app on a store-owned mobile device and next scans a barcode from the customer’s Alipay smartphone app. Wirecard handles payment processing and acquiring.
“It’s a great chance for retailers to provide Alipay and to decide afterwards if the leading payment method in China should be integrated into the (store’s) central till system,” said Jörn Leogrande, Wirecard’s executive vice president of mobile services.