TAIPEI, Taiwan — Silicon Valley is underestimating the distance to which the Chinese government is willing to go boost its global expansion, said PayPal cofounder Peter Thiel in Taipei recently. Thiel was asked to assess whether Jack Ma’s (馬雲) e-commerce platform Alibaba Group, the face of China’s entrepreneurship success story, can be a game-changer overseas.
Currently, there are 17 epayment companies in Indonesia. Names like Veritrans, Coda, and 2c2p come to mind. Some people say competition is good for a tech startup scene. It forces the players in a given space to one-up each other to better serve a market. Folks like Peter Thiel may disagree, however, arguing “creative monopolies” are better. With this in mind, one question to answer is: Which school of thought can best be applied to Indonesia’s epayments space?
Every cent counts for startups. Which makes the PayPal Startup Blueprint welcome news for entrepreneurs. The payment giant announced this week that it will extend the program, which gives startups free payment processing, to eight markets in Asia-Pacific. The program waives processing fees for transactions up to the US$1.5 million mark for PayPal and US$100,000 for Braintree. The latter is only available in Australia for now, but will be available for the rest of Asia soon, according to the press release.
Chinese third-party Internet payment company Alipay revealed that the company has reached a deal with South Korean website Lotte.com to provide a RMB payment channel to Chinese users who shop on the website. Furthermore, the products purchased on the website will be directly shipped from South Korea to China.
One Japanese startup is looking to challenge PayPal by attracting ecommerce merchants and businesses to its new, zero-commission epayment service. Metaps has launched the brand-new Spike into private beta, and it’s now available to online sellers in the US. Choy Wai Cheong, the Singapore-based director and CEO of Metaps, says the aim is to get 30,000 clients using Spike by the end of this year.
Singaporeans – if you’re looking for a reason to purchase the Samsung Galaxy S5, you might have one. The Korean hardware manufacturer will be partnering with PayPal, the global third-party payment service, to launch PayPal fingerprint login for all Galaxy S5 owners residing in the city-state. This means that Galaxy S5 owners who want to buy a pair of shoes on their mobile phones via PayPal, or at a shoe store that accepts offline payments from PayPal, now don’t have to go through the tedious process of thumbing in one’s PayPal username and password. Swiping one’s finger across the phone’s fingerprint sensor does the trick.
GoCoin, a California and Singapore-based company that is creating a PayPal for digital currencies, has closed a US$1.5 million series A venture round led by former Facebook COO Owen Van Natta and Bitcoin Shop, an ecommerce website that transacts in Bitcoin. Crypto Currency Partners also joined the round. GoCoin’s competitors in Bitcoin payment processing include the well-funded Coinbase and BitPay. Brock Pierce, co-founder of GoCoin, told CoinDesk that his company is the number three cryptocurrency payment provider globally.