Ant Financial has acquired remittance firm MoneyGram for a whopping $880m. Ant Financial has been seeking methods to expand internationally, and the acquisition of Moneygram presents a lower friction way to gain a toehold in other countries. Nice first US - China deal in the Trump era.
Jack Ma’s Ant Financial has gotten itself an American colony. The $880 million purchase of the remittances firm MoneyGram in a deal announced on Thursday looks like a counterintuitive bet in a de-globalizing world for the Alibaba founder’s financial services arm. International payments are a tough business. But MoneyGram gives Ant a base with connections to many developing markets. Ant piggybacked off the growth of Alibaba, whose Alipay unit received commissions for each transaction it processed over the companies’ marketplaces. In turn, its payments and financial services division helped the Chinese firm expand its e-commerce business. Alipay’s immense popularity at home has allowed it to accumulate 450 million customers.