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Company in focus

From taxis to temples, Alipay's fast-expanding cashless world

Ant Financial's empire raises concerns of customer data use by Beijing

YUSHO CHO and JOYCE HO, Nikkei staff writers | China

HANGZHOU/HONG KONG -- To fully understand the changing concept of consumer credit in China, one need look no further than Alipay, the online payment platform operated by e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding's affiliate, Ant Financial Services Group.

With more than 520 million users predominantly in mainland China, Alipay handles over 200 million transactions a day, from routine purchases like groceries and taxi fares to less-obvious forms of payment, such as monetary offerings at temples.

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