The Asia-Pacific (APAC) region is home to over 4.2 billion people, or 61 percent of the entire world population. With $878 billion in online retail sales - a 36 percent increase from the previous year, 2015 marked a record year for eCommerce sales in the region. For the first time in history, APAC holds a clear majority of the digital retail market at 53 percent of total global spend. By 2018, this number is predicted to $1.9 trillion, a 63 percent increase in sales.
India and China, the world’s two most populous countries, are among the most sought-after consumer markets worldwide. Among the APAC nations, India and Indonesia saw the greatest growth last year, with India at 130 percent and Indonesia at 66 percent.
Once regarded primarily as major exporters of consumer goods, the APAC region is seeing a shift towards more imports. In China, one of the world’s largest exporters of manufactured goods, there are now nine cities that have been designated as import eCommerce pilot zones. This allows foreign goods to be stored in bonded warehouses in the country before clearing Chinese customs.
With Western online merchants seeking to tap into this rapidly growing market, they will need to able to support receiving payments from APAC consumers. This third installment in our series on cross-border payment services takes a look at the top 10 providers in APAC.
Part of China’s Alibaba Group, cross-border online payment service Alipay is focused on helping international eCommerce merchants sell directly to Chinese consumers that wish to pay using renminbi (RMB), China’s national currency. Once a payment has been collected on behalf of the international vendor, Alipay converts the RMB to one of 12 major currencies and sends it to them. Currencies currently supported include U.S. dollars, British pounds, and euros.
Officially launched in 2005 by Chinese Internet service giant Tencent, Tenpay is a direct competitor to Alipay. Although Tenpay’s offerings are nearly identical to those of its competition, one key differentiator is that it provides a loyalty program called QQ Caibei. This program rewards consumers using Tenpay with credits that can be used to pay for various products or to offset the next payment.
Acquired by U.S.-based Mozido in February 2015, PayEase offers a comprehensive list of payment services for China that includes SMS mobile payments, Internet banking, and point-of-sale (POS) terminals. The company currently has partnerships with 23 major Chinese banks that make up 90 percent of the domestic market and supports 63 different types of credit and debit cards. Providing online payment services to established retailers such as Amazon, Apple, Burberry, and H&M, PayEase is well-positioned to connect major eCommerce merchants in the West to Chinese consumers.
AsiaPay, with its headquarters in Hong Kong, provides both professional payment consulting and local payment services in 12 Asian countries including China, India, Indonesia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam. Supporting payments using credit and debit cards from Visa, MasterCard, American Express, JCB, China UnionPay and others, some of their major clients include Cathay Pacific, Avis, Nike, Canon, and McDonald’s.
NTT Com Asia
Hong Kong-based NTT Com Asia, part of the Japanese NTT Communications Group, offers comprehensive solutions to international businesses for both eCommerce and m-commerce. The company offers a single platform for domestic and cross-border transactions, allowing merchants to accept payments in over 140 transaction currencies and more than 25 settlement currencies for more than 45 countries. NTT Com Asia has a proven payment solution for China that allows overseas merchants to carry out cross-border eCommerce in RMB.
PaySec specializes in providing debit card payment processing services for China and Thailand, with Indonesia and Vietnam to be added in the near future. Offering support for 11 major currencies in APAC, Europe, and North America, PaySec also provides three different API options backed up by 24/7 merchant support to allow easy integration into existing systems.
Red Dot Payment
Singapore-based Red Dot Payment supports payments using Visa, MasterCard, China UnionPay, and eNETS, a Singaporean direct debit network. In addition, Red Dot also supports alternative payment methods from China like Alipay, Tenpay, and 99Bill. Clients have a variety of methods that they can choose from for collecting payment from their customer: direct integration into an eCommerce website, or sending electronic invoices, email, or links.
Founded in 2005, MOLPay offers payment services for credit and debit cards in over 170 currencies as well as domestic online banking for more than 100 APAC banks. For consumers who prefer to pay for their eCommerce purchases with cash, MOLPay Cash is the first payment service in APAC that accepts cash payments at over 40,000 physical payment points such as convenience stores, gas stations, and automated bank machines.
2C2P helps eCommerce and m-commerce businesses accept and make payments when doing business in APAC. Currently, this payment service provider supports payments in seven APAC countries including Myanmar, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Indonesia. 2C2P also offers a secure and cost-effective alternative to using wire transfers or corporate credit cards to pay suppliers: the One-Time Card. This option creates a unique virtual card that is pre-loaded to match the exact amount that is due for payment.
Established in Hong Kong in 2012 through the combination of two other Asian online payment pioneers, VeriTrans (1997) and ECONTEXT (2000), econtext Asia operates in Japan, China, Indonesia, and India, with Vietnam to be added soon. The company offers a wide range of online retail services such as online payment solutions, eCommerce solutions, and online shopping malls. econtext Asia’s current suite of services seems to be largely geared towards the Japanese and Chinese markets, and they also offer cash payment through convenience stores for online purchases in Japan.
As the global economy continues to expand, 67 percent of the world’s middle class population is expected to be in the APAC region by 2030. Much of this growth will be the result of billions of people becoming more educated, globally connected, and socially engaged, thanks in large part to greater mobile Internet access. The opportunities in APAC for international businesses seeking new markets are considerable, given these predictions.
Is your business looking to expand to the APAC region? If so, to which countries?