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French department store adopts Chinese mobile payment to lure Chinese tourists
   2016-11-10 02:52:42    Xinhua      Web Editor: Zhang Xu

The French department store Printemps launched the service Alipay, one of China's biggest payment services, at its flagship store on Wednesday, making it the first department store in France to use the service. [File Photo: 163.com]

The French department store Printemps launched the service Alipay, one of China's biggest payment services, at its flagship store on Wednesday, making it the first department store in France to use the service.

The Alipay app allows consumers to purchase goods in a fast and easy way by transacting money via the QR code generated by their smartphone.

Having 450 million users in China, this service is familiar to many Chinese tourists travelling to France, which is why Printemps adopted it as a new payment solution for its Chinese customers.

"Chinese tourists are one of our most important clientele, we've developed many special services to welcome them in a better way, and we are particularly happy that we can offer them this exclusive service in France by applying Alipay payment," said Annalisa Loustau, chief marketing and communication officer at Printemps.

The department store has integrated Alipay regulations into its central management system and has announced it will roll out the service at its 18 other stores by the end of this year.

Mrs Zhu, a Chinese customer living in France for two years, told Xinhua that most of her payments in France were made using bank cards, which she doesn't find as convenient as the mobile payments she used in China.

"I got used to paying by mobile payments in China, now I feel good that I can use it again in France and I believe my friends coming from China will like it," said Zhu.

Since the terror attacks in Paris last year, the French tourism sector has witnessed a significant drop. According to French media, the country has lost more than eight percent of visitors from January this year and Chinese tourists visiting France have shrunk by 23 percent.

Pierre Pelarrey, CEO of Printemps Haussmann said tourists from overseas represented 40 percent of the store's entire clientele. As the company's business activity is feeling the impact of last year's attacks, it is taking measures to ensure security and provide better orientation and service.

"Chinese customers are very important for us, we will make sure that what they dreamed about Paris in China matches effectively what they experience here at our department store," said Pelarrey.

Alipay is an online payment platform launched in China in 2004 by Alibaba Group and its founder Jack Ma. It has deep roots in Chinese consumers' lives as it is used to pay goods in stores and online and also for services such as taxis, restaurants and clothing.

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