IHG Announces Global Partnership with Alipay

IHG Announces Global Partnership With Alipay

24 August, 2016

IHG Announces Global Partnership with Alipay

IHG becomes the first global hotel company to commit to offering Alipay via its online and mobile channels as well as across all hotels globally

WEDNESDAY 24th AUGUST 2016, LONDON IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group), one of the world s leading hotel companies, today announces that it has signed a global partnership with Alipay, China s leading third-party online payment solutions company. It makes IHG the first global hotel company to give Chinese guests the ability to pay via Alipay through all of IHG s online and mobile channels, as well as across its full estate of hotels globally.

The new partnership, which has been agreed with Alipay s parent company Ant Financial, will initially apply to IHG s existing estate of more than 270 hotels in Greater China, as well as a number of hotels around the world that participate in IHG s China Ready Programme, which offers a range of tailored services to Chinese travellers. The global rollout of Alipay will begin in 2017. IHG was first global hotel company to enter the China market more than 30 years ago and China is now its second largest market globally. The partnership will allow IHG to further capitalise on the significant increase in Chinese outbound travel. According to IHG s Future of Chinese Travel Report1 published in 2015, nearly 90 million Chinese households will be able to travel overseas by 2023, fuelled by a growing middle class and increasing propensity to travel.

Keith Barr, Chief Commercial Officer, IHG commented: IHG has always been a leader in providing advanced payment solutions to guests through our direct booking channels. We are thrilled to be partnering with Alipay to strengthen our ever-evolving travel experience for our guests globally.

Sabrina Peng, Vice President of Ant Financial, commented: As China s leading online and mobile payment solution provider, Alipay aims to deliver convenient and flexible services to customers.

We would like to provide a taste of home for our users when they travel abroad. With IHG s extensive global footprint, this strategic collaboration will help Alipay reach out to more customers, especially Chinese customers as they travel around the world.

Emily Chang, Chief Commercial Officer, IHG Greater China, added: Being able to pay for rooms and services in a familiar payment format is integral to the overall guest experience by ensuring a smooth booking, onsite and checkout process for our guests. Furthermore, via this strategic global partnership with Alipay, we will be exploring opportunities for more in-depth cooperation, including Post Post Pay and the Hotel of the Future Programme, to further improve the booking, onsite and departure experience for our guests. Alipay is currently available in 70 countries and regions across the world. It handles over 160 million transactions every day, of which mobile payments account for more than 70 per cent. To further enhance the user-experience at hotels across China, Alipay is working closely with Alitrip s innovative Hotel of the Future Programme. This programme includes the Post Post Pay product, which enables hotel guests with high credit ratings to make hotel room bookings through Alitrip without paying a deposit at check-in, and to enjoy the true convenience of express check-out.

Today s announcement builds on IHG s existing agreement with Alipay. In 2012, IHG became the first global hotel company to launch a flagship e-store on Alitrip at ihg.alitrip.com, China s largest e-trading platform for online tourism services. The same year, IHG began partnering with Alipay to offer the payment solution through IHG s online booking channels for its hotels in China.

Media Contacts:

Brandy Li
InterContinental Hotels Group
Tel +86 21 2036 3637
Fax +86 21 2893 3399

Miranda Shek
Ant Financial
Tel +86 186 1668 6252
Fax +86 571 2688 8888

NOTES TO EDITORS

About IHG:

IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group)4 LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs) is a global organisation with a broad portfolio of hotel brands, including InterContinental Hotels & Resorts5, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants6, HUALUXE Hotels and Resorts7, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts8, Hotel Indigo 9, EVEN Hotels10, Discount Holidays © Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts11, Discount Holidays © Holiday Inn Express 12, Staybridge Suites 13 and Candlewood Suites 14. IHG franchises, leases, manages or owns more than 5,000 hotels and nearly 750,000 guest rooms in almost 100 countries, with more than 1,400 hotels in its development pipeline. IHG also manages IHG Rewards Club15, the world s first and largest hotel loyalty programme, with more than 96 million members worldwide.

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC16 is the Group s holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales.

More than 350,000 people work across IHG s hotels and corporate offices globally. Visit www.ihg.com17 for hotel information and reservations and www.ihgrewardsclub.com18 for more on IHG Rewards Club. For our latest news, visit: www.ihg.com/media19 and follow us on social media at: www.twitter.com/ihg20, www.facebook.com/ihg21 and www.youtube.com/ihgplc22.

About IHG in Greater China

As the first global hotel company to enter the China market more than 30 years ago, China is now IHG s second largest market globally. IHG has established a significant presence in China covering a wide portfolio with seven brands including InterContinental Hotels and Resorts, HUALUXE Hotels and Resorts, Crowne Plaza Hotels and Resorts, Hotel Indigo Hotels, Discount Holidays © Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts Discount Holidays © Holiday Inn Express Hotels, and Discount Holidays © Holiday Inn Resort . IHG now has 271 open hotels in nearly 100 Chinese cities and 222 hotels in the development pipeline. HUALUXE Hotels and Resorts is the first upscale international hotel brand designed specifically for Chinese consumers. The brand now has three open hotels and another 21 hotels in the development pipeline.

About IHG s China Ready Programme

IHG s China Ready Programme builds on our profound understanding of Chinese consumers, developed during more than 30 years of operations in China. Accredited hotels offer Chinese travellers a series of customised services including a welcome letter in Chinese; Chinese Central Television (CCTV) channels; complimentary internet and access to the IHG Translator App as an IHG Rewards Club member. Our China Ready Programme helps ensure that IHG remains well placed to gain from the huge increases in outbound travel demand from China and to attract more Chinese guests to our hotels worldwide. As part of IHG s global partnership with Alipay, Chinese guests will be able to use Alipay to pay for rooms at www.ihg.com23, on IHG s branded websites, the IHG App for mobile, and onsite at IHG s more than 5,000 hotels globally.

About Ant Financial

Ant Financial Services Group is focused on serving small and micro enterprises as well as individuals. With the vision bring small and beautiful changes to the world, Ant Financial is dedicated to building an open ecosystem of Internet thinking and technologies while working with other financial institutions to support the future financial needs of society. Businesses operated by Ant Financial Services Group include Alipay, Ant Fortune, Zhima Credit and MYbank.

About Alitrip

Alitrip, a subsidiary of Alibaba Group, is a leading platform of online tourism services, offering various travel services covering leisure packages, air tickets, hotel & inns and attractions & local travel products. By integrating more than 100 thousand merchants and more than 10 million products from all relevant fields of the tourism industry, Alitrip has provided online travel services for more than 150 million Chinese cyber-users and covered for more than 100 countries around the world over the last three years.

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References

  1. ^ IHG s Future of Chinese Travel Report (www.ihgplc.com)
  2. ^

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