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China Postal Bank to launch digital banking

china postalPostal Savings Bank of China, with 40,000 branches across China, is preparing to launch a range of internet-based consumer finance services, including mobile banking. The bank, China’s sixth-largest by assets said it wanted to deepen cooperation with online services firm Tencent and Ant, an online payments affiliate of e-commerce giant Alibaba Group. The planned services would transform the bank from a brick-and-mortar lender into a digital player. Both Ant and Tencent, a part owner of the online bank WeBank, participated in the bank’s private equity round of financing last year that raised $7 billion. The bank said, among other things, it will actively explore establishing a mobile payment system and speed up the development of mobile phone-based services. PSBC sees opportunities in particular among rural and low-income customers who don’t currently have access to online banking services.

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