The growing number of Chinese consumers traveling to the U.S. and other countries is becoming a two-for-one opportunity for payment companies. The market's gigantic and growing — and it has a lot of trouble executing transactions.
The National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) has introduced real-time payments leveraging blockchain technology from Ripple, providing a new approach for the bank’s UAE-based customers to send and receive payments across borders.
To date, Ant's Alipay has been comparable to PayPal, seldom venturing beyond payments. The financial products Alipay plans to pursue as it enters new markets put it more firmly in direct competition with mainstream banks.
Alipay's deal to buy MoneyGram for $880 million may be the centerpiece of its strategy to expand beyond China's borders, but it's not its first move in recent months. The Alibaba payments affiliate has already extended its reach in several other ways.
The U.S.-to-China payments corridor is one of the biggest in the world, according to the most recent World Bank data. It is dwarfed only by the U.S.-to-Mexico corridor, which the Trump campaign targeted as part of its border wall plan.