Wirecard announced a partnership with Stuttgart-Marketing GmbH, the official tourism partner of the German state capital of Baden-Württemberg. The collaboration enables the use of the most popular Chinese mobile payment methods in establishments across the city. As a result, Chinese Alipay and WeChat Pay users can now pay with their preferred mobile payment methods in around 50 locations in Stuttgart, including restaurants and bars, museums, retail stores, and transportation services. The partnership is expected to continuously expand, encompassing many more businesses in the near future.
Wirecard and Stuttgart-Marketing are capitalizing on the needs and preferences of Chinese tourists in Germany. Stuttgart is the first city in Germany to position itself as a China Pay City, with the aim of offering the Alipay and WeChat Pay payment solutions in as many locations frequented by Chinese travelers as possible.
Tourists using the Alipay and WeChat apps can find out more about a particular restaurant, hotel or shopping area with a profile in Mandarin, and be sure that they can pay for their meal and shopping items with their mobile payment apps. In addition, businesses can be looked up, reviewed, and featured in special discount sections within the apps. Wirecard will take over the full payment integration and processing, as well as support marketing activities, such as hosting in-app special offers and discounts.
Stuttgart remains among the most visited cities by Chinese tourists in Germany. In 2017, Chinese tourists made up the fourth largest foreign visitor market for Stuttgart, accounting for 65,000 overnight stays in the city. The initiative to become a China Pay City, supported by Wirecard, could be worthwhile for more German cities: China remains among the most important source markets for inbound tourism in Germany, with 2.9 million overnight stays in 2017.
“We are proud to be able to offer Chinese mobile payment methods in local businesses on a wide scale, and look forward to encouraging more and more companies to join our initiative,” commented Armin Dellnitz, Managing Director of Stuttgart-Marketing. “China continues to be a growth market for tourism in Germany as a whole – and also in Stuttgart. We are responsible for marketing Stuttgart as a travel destination and therefore see ourselves as the driving force and facilitator for the new payment systems. Wirecard’s support and expertise in the area of digital payments has been essential in implementing this innovative and forward-thinking solution.”
Marion Laewe, Vice President Sales, Consumer Goods at Wirecard, added, “Our one of a kind partnership with Stuttgart-Marketing is extremely exciting for us. The ability to bring fully digital solutions to hundreds of businesses in a city shows our innovative power in global digital payments, and our ability to be on top of the needs of the market. We look forward to growing our partnership with Stuttgart and further regions.”