The Beijing News, 2/12/14
Beijing-based department store group Wangfujing Department Store has announced the signing of a strategic cooperation with Shenzhen Tencent Computer Systems, a major shareholder of Chinese internet company Tencent (0700.HK). The agreement will see the two companies partner on projects involving Tencent's WeChat Pay ("Weixin Zhifu") payment platform and the public accounts platform of Tencent's WeChat ("Weixin") mobile instant messaging service. Service trials allowing Wangfujing Department Store customers to complete payment using WeChat Pay in Beijing will begin on February 14.
According to an e-commerce supervisor with Wangfujing Department Store, the cooperation with Tencent will take two forms:
1. Customers will be able to pay for Wangfujing Department Store merchandise using WeChat Pay at checkout counters and some specialty counters;
2. Customers will be able to select and purchase merchandise through the Wangfujing Department Store public account on WeChat, later visiting an in-store specialty counter to pick up merchandise.
According to WeChat, recent promotional events launched by the two companies to tout the new functionality include free gifts given to Wangfujing Department Store customers paying RMB 0.01 using WeChat Pay. Over the next two months, Wangfujing Department Store plans to implement WeChat Pay functionality at checkout counters across a number of its locations.
Editor's Note: For more background on this topic, please see "WeChat, Rainbow Partner on O2O Sales" MD 9/10/13 issue, "Alipay Introduces Convenience Store Barcode Payment" MD 12/23/13 issue and "HK, Taiwan Stores to Support Alipay Barcode Payment" MD 1/22/14 issue.