WeChat is taking on more than emoticons. China’s most popular mobile messaging app will soon become a financial service platform with the implementation of a savings investment system.
The messaging app, a service from Internet giant Tencent (HKG:0700), has found success in China and abroad. WeChat will implement the investment system in mid-December, allowing users to link their bank accounts to their WeChat accounts. Users will be able to deposit money through TenPay, Tencent’s payment system, the South China Morning Post reported on Monday.
After depositing money, users can then use the WeChat software to manage their funds, make purchases at participating retailers and automatically recharge their mobile phone plans via the same deposit account. The new savings platform complements WeChat’s existing online payment capabilities, comparable to other e-wallet services like Paypal.
Tencent’s major competitors, Baidu Inc. (Nasdaq:BIDU) and Alibaba, both have similar financial service platforms, but WeChat enjoys a big advantage in its 300 million active users.
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