It seems that everything is bigger in e-commerce China. Ant Financial, the fintech arm of Alibaba’s empire and China’s biggest payment platform, raised $14 billion in what is now the largest confirmed single fundraising round in history.
Ant Financial will use all that firepower to prepare their first IPO as soon as next year.
With both U.S. dollars and Chinese yuan investments, the dollar share made up over $10 billion of the funding, according to Reuters. Among the investors where Canada Pension Plan, whose Investment Board stated that it would invest about $600 million in Ant Financial’s unit, Ant International Co.
“Funds raised will be used to accelerate Alipay’s globalization plans and invest in developing technology to enhance further the Company’s ability to deliver inclusive financial services to unbanked and under-banked consumers and small enterprises globally,” said the company in a statement. “In addition, the capital will be used to cultivate high-tech talent in emerging markets to help communities take advantage of the opportunities arising from digital transformation.”
Among other investors in this critical funding were Malaysian Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF), Khazanah Nasional Bhd, Singaporean SWF, GIC Pte Ltd, and state investor Temasek Holdings Ltd, as well as U.S. private equity firms Warburg Pincus LLC, Silver Lake, and General Atlantic.
With more than 43.5 million registered users in its platform, Alipay is an accepted online payment method for many online retail websites and service providers in China with more than 450 million annual active users.