Atlanta-based fintech leader First Data Corp. (FDC) flipped its earnings to profitability in its latest quarterly report announced before market open on Monday. The commerce-enabling technology and solutions company posted consolidated revenue up moderately, while posted adjusted net income up 82% year-over-year (YOY) in Q3.

The tech firm attributed the earnings turnaround to improved operating results and lower interest expense. Also behind the comeback is a series of new partnerships with financial industry peers.

Integrating Alipay’s Mobile Payments

First Data recently inked a deal with China’s Alipay, the mobile payments arm of internet giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (BABA). Alipay has recently pushed outside of China in order to compete with industry leaders such as Apple Inc.’s (AAPL) Apple Pay, PayPal Inc. (PYPL) and Square Inc. (SQ), in the greater Asia region, Europe and the United States. (See also: U.S. Banks Team Against Online Payment Apps.)

First Data now teams with the same company that beat out eBay Inc. (EBAY) in the race to gain a share of the booming Chinese e-commerce market, here in the US. The partnership intends to bring Alipay mobile payments solutions to U.S. merchants. Starting in November, Alipay will be available first to Chinese consumers at select locations in California and New York. Merchants in the select locations will deploy First Data’s Clover Mini point-of-sale solution to accept Alipay.

Alipay’s strategy has been to first target the 120 million Chinese tourists who go abroad each year, later to expand as a mobile payments choice for a wide range of consumers. First Data’s point of sale hardware combined with Alipay’s mobile payments will compete directly with Square’s merchant point-of-sale business and mobile payments arm, Square Cash. The new team will also take on internet payments pioneer PayPal, with ownership of popular payments platform Venmo. (See also: China’s Alipay Takes on US Rivals.)


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