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Jack Ma's Ant to apply for key license as soon as this month

Bloomberg6/22/2022 09:34 PM GMT+08  • 4 min read
Jack Ma's Ant to apply for key license as soon as this month
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Jack Ma’s Ant Group is poised to apply for a key financial license as soon as this month, according to people familiar with the matter, a sign that its lengthy overhaul following a squashed 2020 listing is getting closer to satisfying China’s financial regulators.

The People’s Bank of China intends to accept Ant’s application to become a financial holding company once it’s submitted and will then start a review process, which could take months, said the people, asking not to be identified discussing a private matter. Officials will examine Ant’s capital strength and business plans, as well as the compliance of its shareholders and senior management before a final signoff.

The moves would mark a crucial development in Ant’s revamp, affirming that the company can maintain its financial operations under the supervision of the central bank. While that clears a path for it to eventually revive a public offering, Ma’s fintech juggernaut will be a much diminished enterprise, with policy makers dramatically curbing its growth in consumer finance and its ability to leverage its ubiquitous payments app.

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