Central Retail Corporation (CRC) has forged a strategic partnership with Ant Group to unveil Alipay+, a cutting-edge digital payment solution that promises to revolutionize the shopping experience for Asian tourists visiting Thailand. This collaboration will cater to travelers from the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong SAR, Malaysia, and South Korea, offering them a streamlined way to make secure digital transactions using their local digital wallets.
The Alipay+ platform will encompass renowned wallets such as Alipay (China), AlipayHK (Hong Kong SAR), Touch ‘n Go eWallet (Malaysia), and Kakao Pay (South Korea), eliminating the need for physical cash or currency exchange while shopping at CRC’s expansive network of over 3,000 stores nationwide.
Piyawan Leelasompop, Head of Corporate Marketing at Central Retail Corporation PCL, remarked on the significance of this milestone: “The launch of Alipay+ in collaboration with Ant Group marks a transformative leap in enhancing our digital payment ecosystem for CRC customers. By catering to the growing preference for cashless transactions, particularly among Asian tourists, we aim to provide unparalleled convenience to those visiting our Central Retail brands. This partnership unlocks not only the ease of mobile wallet payments but also ushers in exclusive promotions and privileges, elevating the overall shopping experience.”
Aligned with the surge in Asian tourists flocking to Thailand, the introduction of Alipay+ comes at an opportune time. In the first half of 2023 alone, Thailand welcomed over 12.46 million international visitors, with key countries including Malaysia, China, Russia, South Korea, and India. This trend is projected to continue, with an estimated total of 25 million international tourists expected by year-end. Central Retail’s diverse array of flagship stores and shops have established themselves as favored shopping destinations for these travelers. Notably, the first quarter of this year witnessed a substantial surge in tourists shopping at Central Retail outlets, with sales from international visitors experiencing an impressive uptick of nearly 200% compared to the same period last year and 16% compared to 2019, pre-Covid-19.
“The introduction of Alipay+ into our CRC Ecosystem exemplifies our commitment to infusing the latest global technologies, fostering inclusive growth for customers, brands, and partners alike. This initiative aligns seamlessly with our CRC Retailligence strategy, aimed at propelling significant growth within five years and establishing ourselves as Asia’s Next-Gen Omni Retailer,” concluded Piyawan.
Sittipong Kittiprapapong, General Manager for Global Merchant Partnership in Thailand at Ant Group, underscored the significance of this collaboration: “The partnership between Ant Group and Central Retail is a pivotal step towards offering modern, convenient services that facilitate seamless digital payments for international customers. Alipay+ not only empowers Central Retail vendors to accept digital payments from Asian tourists but also provides a user-friendly platform for global shoppers to explore products during their stay in Thailand, ensuring a hassle-free experience comparable to their home country.”
Alipay+ stands as a global cross-border digital payment platform and marketing solution, designed to diversify options for digital payments while fostering ease and convenience for both businesses and consumers. Sittipong emphasized, “We are committed to supporting businesses in connecting with over 1 billion consumers globally through a comprehensive operating system.”
To commemorate the launch, international travelers using Alipay+ for purchases at Central Retail stores from August 15 to September 30, 2023, will be rewarded with enticing discounts as part of the Mega Campaign:
- Spend 200 baht and receive a 50 baht cash voucher
- Spend 2,000 baht and receive a 250 baht cash voucher
For more information regarding the Mega Campaign for Alipay+ users, visit the official Central Retail website at www.centralretail.com.