The British Standards Institution (BSI) recently issued Jiajia Payment (家家支付), a Chinese payment platform that focuses on serving the residential sector, with its ISO27001 information security management system and ISO27701 privacy information management system certification. These two standards have become internationally recognized authoritative system certification standards in the field of information security. The BSI, a national standards body, produces technical standards on a wide range of products and services and also supplies certification and standards-related services to businesses.
On December 3rd, UnionPay International announced the launch of UnionPay PaybyLink, a link-based payment service, to provide merchants with a minimalist digital sales solution. With this solution, merchants are able to sell their products in just a few minutes by offering an online payment service to UnionPay cardholders via means such as SMS and e-mail, without the need of having to open online stores on e-commerce platforms.
On December 2nd, JD Digits and the China Financial Certification Authority (CFCA), a national security certification authority, held a strategic cooperation signing ceremony in Beijing. The two parties have agreed to share their respective technologies, customers, and other resource advantages to promote cooperation in electronic authentication, judicial practice, cryptographic applications, and information security services. In addition, they will jointly build a "blockchain – e-contract certificate alliance chain", a "blockchain - distributed authentication alliance chain," and other innovative products.
On December 3rd it was announced by a person familiar with the matter that China’s regulators were studying options for restructuring Ant Group. As China overhauls rules governing the fintech industry, Ant itself is considering adjusting its organizational structure and the restructuring of its business units. The Group is said to be considering splitting off its financial businesses that require a license. There is talk that Alipay could be carved out and list independently. An institutional investor familiar with Ant Group said that, "Alipay’s business model is Visa. The two have no risk of credit loss. If Alipay is separated and listed alone, there will be no regulatory barriers."
On November 27th, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) issued a notice on requesting the submission of relevant data of "Xinyidai" (信易贷). Xinyidai is a national integrated credit service platform which provide operating loan for small and medium-sized enterprises. The content of the submission includes the cumulative amount and balance of credit loans; the monthly issued credit loan amount and month-on-month growth rate of credit loans as well as the number of connected platforms. As of June 2020, more than 1.15 million companies have registered on the Xinyidai platform, with a total amount of 420 billion yuan.
The China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) has given Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank the greenlight for an onshore IPO. It will become the second listed bank to list in the A-share market this year and the ninth rural commercial lender overall. According to the Bank’s official announcement, it was established on August 25th, 2005, and is headquartered in Shanghai. The bank currently has a registered capital of RMB 8.68 billion, more than 360 business outlets, and more than 7,000 employees.
Following the successful pilot scheme run in Shenzhen in which a total of 10 million digital yuan was distributed to 50,000 winners of red envelopes in a lottery format draw, Suzhou will now be the second Chinese city to roll out a “red envelope” trial for the forthcoming digital currency. The launch of the digital RMB red envelopes will coincide with the Double 12 shopping festival which takes place on December 12th. Many businesses have reportedly already installed near-field communication QR codes in anticipation of the trial.
Hong Kong Exchange and Clearing Limited (HKEX) intends to introduce HKEX Synapse, a new settlement acceleration platform for its landmark Stock Connect program. HKEX Synapse will automate and streamline post-trade processes, underpinning the growth of global investors accessing the Mainland China market via Stock Connect. Targeting production in Q1 2022, HKEX Synapse will improve the efficiency and transparency of Northbound Stock Connect settlement for institutional investors.
On November 25th, Ant Group’s Jiebei online cash loan platform launched a new “Benefit Installment" (惠分期) service for certain users. Compared with Jiebei, monthly interest rates of Benefit Installment are as low as 0.65%. Although Benefit Installment charges a lower rate, the way the fixed installments are structured allows Jiebei to lock in more profits. In a like-for-like comparison with Jiebei, however, it will generally be more favorable for borrowers to use the Benefit Installment service.
IceKredit, a China-based AI powered platform for business, completed a USD33 million series C1 round of funding on November 24th. The round was led by Guoxin Venture Investment with participation from Guohe Capital, Yunqi Partners, and China Creation Ventures. IceKredit provides financial institutions with risk mitigation solutions including anti-fraud and improved credit decisions. Its services and products cover proprietary machine learning algorithms, standard personal and business credit scores, customizable credit risk modeling, and an AI powered platform. The company intends to use this fund for expanding the development team, investments and acquisitions, and improving its business ecosystem.
According to a recent public announcement made via the Shanghai Stock Exchange’s (SSE) Corporate Bond Project Information Platform, Chinese fintech giant Ant Group has secured approval for 20 billion yuan (USD3.04 billion) in two asset-backed security (ABS) financing projects for the Group’s Huabei and Jiebei platforms. Three more asset-backed financing plans associated with the Huabei and Jiebei platforms are also currently under review by Chinese regulators and have a total value of 26 billion yuan.
Ping An Bank signed a comprehensive strategic cooperation agreement with Caijin Technology (财金科技) in Shanghai on the 11th of November. Caijin Technology is an aggregated credit inquiry platform focusing on traffic realization system services. Their main business includes personal aggregate credit inquiry, credit card marketing activities, integrated traffic system services, financial information, and other services. The two parties will create an efficient one-stop marketing solution and establish an independent marketing promotion platform for brokers.
On November 16th, the Shanghai Pudong Development Bank issued an announcement reiterating that credit cards are only to be used by cardholders for their daily real consumption needs. They must not be used for non-consumption purposes such as production and operations, fixed asset investment, equity investment, house purchase, and debt repayments etc. In addition to the Shanghai Pudong Development Bank, the Postal Savings Bank of China, Everbright, CITIC and other Chinese banks have also reiterated the use of funds, delineated red lines, and adjusted credit card related rights and interests.
Recently, the PBOC’s Shenzhen branch announced that Shenzhen-based Sharelink (讯联智付), an online payment-related financial services provider for the securities industry and its end customers, was subject to administrative penalties. The company was charged with failing to establish relevant systems and risk management measures in accordance with regulations. It was subsequently fined 90,000 yuan. Sharelink was established in June 2013 and was issued a payment license in July 2014.