Russian retailer Dixy has announced that it is the first major grocer in the country to introduce the Alipay payment system into its stores.
The company trialled the technology in a number of Dixy stores in Moscow and St Petersburg last month, but now has plans to rolls it out to a further 150 stores.
Looking ahead, Dixy plans to extend Alipay to all of its stores, as well as the Victoria supermarket chain, where the system is currently being tested.
Alipay is a mobile payment system, owned by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, that allows shoppers to complete transactions through their smartphone, rather than by cash or card.
It is currently used by more than 520 million people, making it one of the largest payment platforms in the world.
Dixy says that the introduction of this system will help attract additional traffic from Chinese tourists and Chinese citizens who are working or studying in Russia.
Alipay also gives retailers an opportunity to communicate to consumers, giving information on store locations, goods, and promotional offers.
As a result, Dixy says that investment in this system will provide retail opportunities in the future, tapping into the growing Chinese tourism market.
According to Nielsen, over 90% of Chinese shoppers prefer to use the mobile app as their primary payment method when travelling abroad.
“We have constantly been working on the improvement of our stores and we would be glad to offer customers using Alipay to ability to purchase goods through the payment system," said Sergey Belyakov, the general director of Dixy Group.
"This is particularly important on the eve of the World Cup and the forecasted increase in tourist flow that we expect from it."
Dixy is not the only retail group to be capitalising on this opportunity. Earlier this week, Spanish department store operator El Corte Inglés announced that it is also introducing Alipay to its stores across Europe.
© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Sarah Harford. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.