The banking regulator in Hong Kong has issued an additional four online-only banking licenses to Ping An, Alibaba, mobile phone maker Xiaomi and a joint venture (JV) consisting of Tencent, ICBC and Hillhouse Capital.
Reuters is reporting that this totals eight total licenses handed out by the government.
The Hong Kong Monetary Authority, which handed out the licenses, expects the banks to launch in about six to nine months. The new ventures would be closely regulated, with special attention given to customer reactions and the response of the banking industry. (more…)