Ant Financial, the financial affiliate of e-commerce giant Alibaba, is planning to acquire a 20 percent stake in Thai third-party payment company Ascend Money, according to an announcement made by China’s Ministry of Commerce last Wednesday.

The investment was proposed by Ant Financial’s Hong Kong-listed payment unit Alipay (Hong Kong) Holding Ltd. In addition, the Chinese company is also seeking an option to increase its stake by a further 10 percent within 21 months of the transaction being finalized.

Ascend Money, a newly established unit of Ascend Group, is the parent company of online payment service True Money and licensed financial services provider Ascend Nano. Ascend Group is a spin-off from True Corporation, a top-three telecom carrier in Thailand.

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Emma Lee

Emma Lee is Shanghai-based tech writer, covering startups and tech happenings in China and Asia in general. We are looking for stories related to tech and China. Reach her at lixin@technode.com.