Payments services firm Lianlian raises US$146 mln in new funding

September 04, 2018 12:31
Partnering with global players PayPal and Apple, China's Lianlian Pay offers services including cross-border clearing and settlement, foreign currency exchange and renminbi disbursement. Photo: Lianlian Pay

Lianlian Group, the parent company of Chinese payment solution provider Lianlian Pay, has closed a new financing round of 1 billion yuan (US$146 million), boosting the total received funding this year to almost 5 billion yuan, according to a report from Chinese tech news site 36Kr.

The new investment was made by Sequoia Capital China and Boyu Capital. Lianlian will use the fresh capital to enhance its operation, focusing on supporting Lianlian Pay’s overseas expansion.

Meanwhile, Shen Nanpeng, the global executive partner of Sequoia Capital; Chen Yuqing, a general manager of Everbright Industrial; and Chen Bin, the president of Cybernaut, have been appointed directors of Lianlian Pay, participating in the strategic planning of the payment solution provider, according to Chinese media reports.

Founded in 2003 by Pan Guo-dong, who previously worked in Alibaba and Alipay, Hangzhou-based Lianlian Pay positions itself as a Chinese non-banking, third-party payment service provider.

Its payment solution supports settlements of 19 currencies, enabling users to enjoy direct connection and services from all major Chinese banks. It offers services including cross-border clearing and settlement, foreign currency exchange, local regulatory filing and declaration, and renminbi disbursement.

According to its website, the payment solution provider counts PayPal and Apple as strategic partners, and its clients range from domestic online marketplaces like AliExpress and to foreign e-commerce giants such as Amazon and Rakuten.

As of 2017, Lianlian Pay had served more than 300 million registered users. In June this year, Lianlian Pay announced that it hit 2 trillion yuan in transaction volume since the launch. As for the cross-border payment service, the transaction volume is said to have exceeded 20 billion yuan in the first half of this year, serving 300,000 cross-border e-commerce sellers in China.

The company reportedly aims to achieve "several trillion yuan of overall transaction volume and several hundred billion yuan of cross-border payment transaction volume" in three years.

Earlier this year, Everbright Industry and Cybernaut Investment group pumped in several billion yuan into Lianlian Group.

Lianlian Pay's biggest rival, Tencent-backed Airwallex has also raised a US$80 million Series B round this July. The funding round was led by existing investors Tencent and Sequoia Capital China. Other participants included China’s Hillhouse and Horizons Ventures — a venture fund associated with Hong Kong's richest man, Li Ka-Shing.

Airwallex, which was founded three years ago, shifted its headquarters to Hong Kong from Melbourne in August, as it expressed interest in applying for a virtual banking license in the city.

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