Mobile payments specialists CANCAN and WorldFirst have launched a new payments and marketing platform that enables Alipay and WeChat Pay payments across Europe.

The two mobile wallets dominate the Chinese payments market. WeChat Pay and Alipay have one billion and 550 million users, respectively, in Mainland China.

Designed to manage and facilitate instore, in-app and online payment, the platform is capable of reconciling multiple payment methods and gateways in a single, unified backend system.

It will help to bolster the businesses of the merchants by catering to the Chinese tourist-customers. Additionally, it is expected to reduce transactional costs as well as streamline payment and reconciliation process.

Currently, the service has been launched in Italy through Dufrital, a part of duty-free operator Dufry Group.

CANCAN managing director Candice Koo said: “Offering both payment methods is essential for merchants who want to fully engage and service Chinese consumers, and especially Chinese millennials, who use the wallets with equal frequency but for different reasons.

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“Italy is known to be an open and welcoming country, and by introducing a solution that combines Alipay and WeChat Pay with targeted digital marketing we feel we are enhancing the travel experience for Chinese tourists.”

WorldFirst chief enterprise officer Nick Aston said: “Together, we’re making it easier for Chinese consumers to use their preferred payment method of choice around the globe and it’s great to bring our cross-border expertise and technology to this partnership to help merchants get paid faster too.

“We are also working on enabling other new payment methods together, so this is just the beginning.”