Alibaba’s Ant Financial invests $200M in messaging platform Kakao

Investment in the mobile finance subsidiary of Kakao marks one of the first Ant Financial fundings in South Korea, a part of its larger global expansion strategy

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A journalist and writer from hills, Kritika has an inclination towards technology, politics and sports.

Ant Financial, Alibaba’s payment affiliate has announced to expand its operations globally with a $200 million investment in the mobile finance subsidiary of South Korean messaging platform Kakao.

This deal is a part of a strategic partnership to help connect the company’s 450 million global users with Kakao Pay.

“South Korea is an important market for Ant Financial in its global expansion, and we see many opportunities in the market for innovative services and growth in mobile payments,” said Douglas Feagin, President, Ant Financial International.

According to media sources, Kakao Talk has 48 million users. It is installed in over 95% of smartphones in Korea and has long offered mobile payments through its platform.

Last month, Ant Financial announced an $880 million deal for US money-transfer firm MoneyGram International. It has investments in Indian mobile payment and e-commerce website Paytm and Thai financial technology firm Ascend Money. It plans to expand in the Philippines with a stake in Globe Telecom’s fintech firm Mynt.

The company is also in the process of closing a $3 billion debt funding round which would be used to make investments and acquisitions.

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