Santander UK, via Elavon, is to enable its business amd corporate merchants to join the European networks of Alipay, WeChat Pay and UnionPay.
Santander UK, via its merchant acquiring partner Elavon, will soon enable its business and corporate merchants to join the growing European networks of Alipay, WeChat Pay and UnionPay, across both eCommerce and point of sale (POS) solutions.
Elavon will offer Santander customers the option to accept these Chinese payment methods (including Alipay, UnionPay and WeChat Pay) online via its website from early 2018. Elavon plans to expand this functionality across its full suite of POS solutions, which already accept UnionPay.
Santander cites the continued growth in Chinese expats and students living in the UK, together with the increasing spend of Chinese tourists (exceeding £1 billion in 2017) when visiting the UK, as contributing factors in delivering these new payment solutions.
Michael Vallance, Managing Director of Transaction Banking at Santander Corporate Banking, observed: “By working with Elavon to make these exciting Chinese payment solutions available, we are not only enabling UK businesses to accept more types of alternative payments as quickly as possible; we are also giving them access to what is a highly lucrative Chinese e-commerce market where the demand for quality UK goods is continuing to increase. We can now therefore support UK businesses entering this market without necessarily the need for a physical footprint in China.”
Hannah Fitzsimons, General Manager for Elavon Europe, added: “Customers today are looking for a wide range of payment options, they want to pay for the goods and services they buy wherever, whenever and however they choose. With the growing spending power of Chinese consumers, it’s important that businesses offer payment brands which are familiar and accessible to this important target audience. We’re delighted to partner with Santander around this opportunity.”
Santander UK is a financial services provider in the UK that offers a wide range of personal and commercial financial products and services. It has brought real competition to the UK, through its innovative products for retail customers and relationship banking model for UK SMEs. At 30 June 2017, the bank serves around 14 million active customers with c19,500 employees and operates through 826 branches (which includes 61 university branches) and 65 regional Corporate Business Centres. Santander UK is subject to the full supervision of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) in the UK. Santander UK plc customers are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) in the UK.
Elavon Financial Services DAC, trading as Elavon Merchant Services is authorised by Central Bank of Ireland and the Prudential Regulation Authority and subject to limited regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority. Details about the extent of our authorisation and regulation by the Prudential Regulation Authority, and regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority are available from us on request.
Alipay is operated by Ant Financial Services Group. Launched in 2004, Alipay currently has over 520 million active users and over 400 financial institution partners globally.
WeChat Pay, the mobile payment solution which is owned by Tencent, has over 600 million active users globally.
UnionPay operates China’s national inter-bank clearing and settlement system and develops the worldwide UnionPay Card acceptance network, which is present in over 140 countries and regions through extensive cooperation with more than 400 institutions globally.
Elavon Inc., is a processor of credit card transactions and a subsidiary of U.S. Bancorp. Elavon offers merchant processing in more than 30 countries and supports the payment needs of more than 1,000,000 merchant locations across the globe. Elavon is the 4th largest U.S. credit card processor and is a top six acquirer in the European marketplace.
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About Banco Santander
Banco Santander (SAN SM, STD US, BNC LN) is a leading retail and commercial bank, founded in 1857 and headquartered in Spain. It has a meaningful market share in 10 core countries in Europe and the Americas, and is among the world’s top banks by market capitalization. At the end of June 2017, Banco Santander had EUR 1.65 trillion in managed funds, 131 million customers, 13,800 branches and 200,000 employees. Banco Santander made attributable profit of EUR 3.6 billion in the first half of 2017, an increase of 24% compared to the same period last year.
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