A payments firm is hoping that a new way to spend will entice tourists to come to Canada and shop until they drop…their phones, that is.
OTT Pay has announced that the two largest Chinese mobile payment services are now available at select Cadillac Fairview (CF) establishments—WeChat Pay and Alipay. OTT Pay is a Toronto-based payments firm that is part of a larger Chinese subsidiary, while CF is one of the country’s preeminent real estate owners.
CF is well-known for the multitude of large shopping malls they operate, and the list of spots users can now use WeChat Pay and Alipay includes some of the more famous malls in Canada, as shown below.
- Pacific Centre (Vancouver, BC)
- Richmond Centre (Richmond, BC)
- Chinook Centre (Calgary, AB)
- Masonville Place (London, ON)
- Markville Mall (Markham, ON)
- Toronto Eaton Centre (Toronto, ON)
- Sherway Gardens (Toronto, ON)
- Fairview Pointe Claire (Pointe-Claire, QC)
“With many CF shopping centres designated as official tourist destinations, tourism continues to play a big role in our retail business,” said Christine Poirier, the director of loyalty for Cadillac Fairview. “At Cadillac Fairview, our focus is on delivering great experiences that give our shoppers inspiration and efficiency, and we’re pleased to partner with OTT Pay to provide our shoppers with the ability to make seamless transactions via these two mobile payments through our CF SHOP! Card.”
The new integration will work when customers visit guest services located in any of the malls and purchase a CF SHOP! gift card that can then be used at any store within the mall. The two forms of payment are used most often by Chinese citizens, and Cadillac Fairview hopes that this new integration will make tourists feel more comfortable in Canada.
WeChat and Alipay are extremely popular services, with 960 million and 530 million monthly users on each, respectively. WeChat is the popular platform that incorporates messaging, banking, and almost anything someone may need, all within one interface. Alipay is a third-party payment platform established by e-commerce behemoth Alibaba.
“Through this partnership with Cadillac Fairview, we are able to develop a more welcoming shopping experience to Cadillac Fairview’s Chinese consumers who will enjoy the ease of shopping at CF’s retailers while paying in Chinese Yuan through their existing mobile wallets,” said Alex Liu, the VP of OTT Financial Group.
This announcement builds on announcements last year that saw OTT partner with both Toronto and Montreal Tourism that let Chinese tourists pay for products directly from the WeChat Pay app.
According to stats from Tourism Toronto, China is the largest non-North American market for Toronto, with close to 300,000 visitors spending approximately $275 million CAD in the region each year.