Ant International Saudi expansion gains momentum through MoU

credit: Shutterstock
credit: Shutterstock

Global commerce digital payment company Ant International is set for expansion across Saudi Arabia after signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ministry of Investment of Saudi Arabia (MISA). 

The partnership with MISA enables Ant International to continue plans for business expansion and aims to establish an entity in Saudi Arabia, enabling assistance when acquiring licences for its service offerings. 

Ant International has identified Saudi Arabia as a key gateway for further expansion across the Middle East. The company intends to roll out its payment and financial services throughout the country and the rest of the region to provide greater access to digital payment solutions. 

Ant International President, Douglas Feagin, met with Eng Saleh Khabti, Deputy Minister for Investment at MISA, during a signing ceremony held in Riyadh to usher in the new partnership. 

Feagin said: “We see an enormous opportunity for expansion in the Middle East and in particular Saudi Arabia, which has been supportive of technological innovations and digitalisation, empowering its businesses to thrive.”

“Through our agreement with MISA, Ant International enters an exciting new chapter of opportunity within Saudi Arabia. 

“We’re delighted to build upon our progress in the Middle East to support merchants’ access to our world-class payment solutions and inclusive financial services, providing Saudi businesses with various tools to grow and benefit from international travel and trade.”

Ant International has four key services for global merchants – Alipay+, Antom, WorldFirst and ANEXT Bank.  

Alipay+ platform facilitates cross-border mobile payment and digitalisation technology solutions, Antom is used for merchant payment services, WorldFirst is a digital payment financial service for cross-border trade, and ANEXT Bank is a digital wholesale bank located in Singapore. 

Commenting on the MoU with Ant International, Eng Saleh Khabti, added: “We have worked closely with Ant International on its expansion into the Kingdom which will not only benefit thousands of merchants across the country but potentially hundreds of thousands of businesses right across the Middle East. 

“We are seeing tremendous growth in digital payments in Saudi Arabia and we expect this trend to continue with Ant International’s expansion which will further boost the financial services sector in the Kingdom.”