Previously known as Alipay founded back in December 2004 by Jack Ma at Hangzhou, China; an affiliate company of the Alibaba Group; then rebranded as Ant Financial Services Group back in October 2014 with over 7000 employees is a Chinese firm. Among all the Fintech companies around the world, Ant Financial is the most valuable one with a worth of $150 billion. It runs the world's largest mobile and online payments platform, known as Alipay, and also the world's largest money-market fund Yu’e Bao. Ant Financial also operates the Sesame credit rating system. Through Alipay services, Ant Financial provided a face recognition technology that can be used when making a payment.
Acknowledging the positive environmental impact Ant Financial had on the Ant forest, the most massive rostrum in the world that is used to track individual carbon footprints, Ant Financial was recognized and ranked sixth in the list of Fortune's Change the World. Ant forest allows users to gather energy points in the real world through their actions which further can be used to grow virtual, and eventually real trees. Ant Financial along with its partners, and the NGOs like the China Green Foundation, the SEE foundation have by far planted 10.25 million trees, which accounts to a total of 1.22 million-ton reduction in the emission of CO2 gas.
Now Ant Financial has admitted to the fact that it raised a considerable amount of $14 billion in Series C Funding round. The money flows in from local investors in U.S dollars and Chinese Renminbi. The investors' list includes Warburg Pincus, American private equity firm; Temasek and GIC, Singapore-based sovereign funds; Khazanah Nasional Berhad, Malaysian sovereign fund; and Silver Lake, and General Atlantic, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. (Taken from Techcrunch, Author: Jon Russell)
Ant Financial said the money would be invested in its global expansion plans, especially in non-China markets that which it has already entered into. The funds will also be used for HR hiring and development of technology. Alibaba previously didn't invest in it, which it spaced out shortly right before its mega-IPO back in 2014 in the U.S. The recent news is that Alibaba currently holds 33 percent of shares in Ant Financial.
Ant Financial has been a crucial Fintech firm in China for a very long time now. In the recent years, it has made numerous investments, set up new businesses, and joint-ventures in many Asian countries which include India, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Pakistan, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Korea, and Thailand.
Source: Techcrunch, Source of the image: KrASIA