The People’s Bank of China has now allowed a new credit-scoring firm that is owned by a consortium including Ant Group to operate in Mainland China. The consortium also features a collection of state-backed partners. Analysts and commentators believe that Ant Group was compelled to partner with the state-backed institutions to be allowed to operate in the country.
In that context, Qiantang Credit Rating is set to become the third personal credit scoring company in China. It will have a capital of up to one billion yuan, according to the official reports by the central bank.
According to the agreement, Ant will own 35% of the venture and the state-backed Zhejiang Tourism Investment Group will also own 35% of the business. The other 30% will be held by different state-backed and private entities.
This new business venture is part of a restructuring program for Ant after the fintech behemoth fell foul of Chinese regulators. That incident compelled it to stop its planned $37 billion initial public offering (IPO) late last year.
In March 2021, the Financial Times published that Ant was resisting pressure to hand over client data to the central bank. In that incident, the central bank wanted the information which would enable state-owned banks to assess the creditworthiness of the people involved.