Through our merchant acquiring partner Elavon, our customers will have the option to accept Chinese payment methods (such as UnionPay and other Chinese fintech companies which offer these services) via their own websites. Elavon plans to expand this functionality across its POS solutions, which already accept UnionPay, by the end of 2018.
This will be a major boost for business customers looking to export to China, which has a growing market with 200 million more online retail shoppers projected to be active by 2020 as well as online retail sales expected to double to USD 1.7 trillion.
There has also been significant growth in the number of Chinese expats and students living in the UK, together with the increasing spend of Chinese tourists when visiting the UK. The average spend per transaction for Chinese shoppers was £922 in 2017, a 23.5% increase from 2016 where average spend per transaction was £746. It will now be much easier for them to make purchases in the UK with their existing payment provider.
Michael Vallance, Managing Director of Transaction Banking at Santander Corporate Banking, said:
In working with Elavon to make these exciting Chinese payment solutions available, we’re not only enabling UK businesses to accept more types of alternative payments as quickly as possible; we’re also giving them access to the Chinese e-commerce market where the demand for quality UK goods is continuing to increase. We can now therefore support UK businesses entering this market without necessarily the need for a physical footprint in China.
Hannah Fitzsimons, General Manager for Elavon Europe added:
Customers today are looking for a wide range of payment options. They want to pay for the goods and services they buy wherever, whenever and however they choose. With the growing spending power of Chinese consumers, it’s important that businesses offer payment brands which are familiar and accessible to this important target audience. We’re delighted to partner with Santander around this opportunity.