JD.com Inc, China’s second-biggest e-commerce player, confirmed on Friday [3 February 2017] it is carrying out work related to a banking license, in a move that would see it joining its tech counterparts in offering banking services. The confirmation follows recent media reports which said the internet giant is willing to cooperate with a domestic traditional bank to open a direct bank, engaging in direct banking business as a separate legal entity…Full Article: China Daily Feb 2017

Key Points

  • In January 2017, the China Banking Regulatory Commission granted approval to Baidu Inc. (30% stake) and China CITIC Bank (70% stake) to establish Baixin Bank, an online direct bank.
  • In June 2015, Alibaba’s Ant Financial Services Group established MYbank, an online direct bank.
  • In January 2015, Tencent Holding established China’s first online direct bank, WeBank.

ChinaAg Comments

  • In February 2016, COFCO Group launched COFCO Healthy Life on Tencent’s WeChat. The online store focuses on selling nutritional and dietary supplements. COFCO was incentivizing users to purchase products on COFCO Healthy Life by giving them with “cash back” rewards.
  • As of early 2016, China’s electronic payment market was dominated by Alibaba Group’s Alipay and Tencent’s WeChat Wallet.
  • In November 2015, JD.com sued Alibaba in a Beijing court over unfair business practices. JD.com accused Alibaba of “forcing merchants” to exclusively sell/distribute products from a single e-commerce site for promotional marketing/activities.
  • In March 2014, Tencent Holdings (internet and tech investment company) purchased a 15% stake in JD.com.
  • Founded in 1998 and headquartered in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province, Tencent Holdings (HKG:0700) is an internet focused service company whose digital product line includes QQ (instant messaging service), WeChat (Weixin instant messaging service), and other web-based services such as video games, microblogs, search engines, web browsers, and e-commerce. In June 2004, Tencent Holdings was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
  • Founded in 1998 and headquartered in Beijing, Jingdong Mall (aka JD.com) is one of China’s largest e-commerce platforms. In May 2014, the company was listed on New York’s NASDAQ Stock Exchange (NASDAQ:JD). The company’s original focus was electronics.

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