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Ant Financial opens Alipay-driven unmanned store in Hong Kong

Ant Financial Services Group, an affiliate of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., opened an unmanned apparel store in Hong Kong that uses its mobile payment platform Alipay, the Nikkei Asian Review reported Sept. 7.

The retail outlet was set up as a pilot at the Olympian City shopping center to promote mobile payments in the city, where the cashless method is less popular compared to mainland China, according to the report.

Customers enter the store using a facial recognition system that generates a QR code, which must be scanned by a smartphone to open the doors. After selecting items, shoppers scan another QR code to make the purchase through Alipay. The shop also features a coffee-serving robot.

Ant Financial's Hong Kong unit AlipayHK, a joint venture with CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd., manages the store, the report said.