China's Alipay Overtakes Paypal

Chinese online payment platform Alipay has announced that the company has gained over 200 million users, exceeding the world's largest e-commerce payment platform Paypal.

According to news on Sohu.com, at the end of August 2008, the number of Alipay users reached 100 million. It took five years for Alipay to accumulate the 100 million users since it first appeared on Taobao.com in October 2003. During the past ten months, the number of Alipay's users further increased from 100 million to 200 million.

Prior to this, the world's largest third-party payment platform Paypal said it had about 180 million users in 190 countries and regions around the world. With the 200 million users, Alipay exceeds Paypal for the first time to become the world's largest third-party online payment platform by user scale, and its users are mainly from the Chinese market.

Shao Xiaofeng, president of Alipay, told local media that though Alipay's current trading value is still lower than that of Paypal, the company is expected to exceed the latter within three years.

Alipay's rapid development has close relationship with the fast growth of the number of Chinese netizens and the development of the Internet economy of the country. Statistics released by China Internet Network Information Center show that by May 2009, China had 320 million netizens and about 62.5% of these netizens are users of Alipay. In addition, the number of Chinese netizens is expected to reach over 600 million in the next two years.

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