One of Africa’s finest startups, Flutterwave, sent some nice waves to Chinese Alibaba – and both are now dancing. Yes, Flutterwave is partnering with Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba to offer digital payments, connecting African merchants with Alibaba’s Alipay. Africa will be payment-connected, and China will be integrated; Flutterwave CEO said it all: “This means that all our merchants can accept or install Alipay as a payment type to accept payments from its billion users. There’s a lot of trade between Africa and China and this integration makes it easier for African merchants to accept Chinese customer payments.” That is unification via payment.
Flutterwave is a Nigerian-founded B2B payments service (primarily) for companies in Africa to pay other companies on the continent and abroad.
Alipay is Alibaba’s digital wallet and payments platform. In 2013, Alipay surpassed PayPal in payments volume and currently claims a global network of more than 1 billion active users, per Alibaba’s latest earnings report.
A large portion of Alipay’s network is in China, which makes the Flutterwave integration significant to capturing payments activity around the estimated $200 billion in China-Africa trade.
I wrote a long piece about the Amazing Flutterwave here.