Alipay Yu’e Bao and Taobao Trip launched Lvyou Bao, or “travel treasure”, a travel product with investment benefit.
How it works: Consumers pay for travel service on Taobao with Yu’e Bao after which the paid money is not in fact spent but “frozen” until consumers confirm the travel service. During the “frozen” period, consumers can make money from Yu’E Bao.
Lvyou Bao offers 30 day unconditional refund; consumers can cancel the booking and still enjoy the benefit made from Yu’E Bao with previously paid money. This is an illustration of Yu’E Bao’s efforts facing its declining yields.
Taobao and Alipay are working hand in hand for more shares of China travel market from leaders like Ctrip and Elong. Alipay has recently reached a cooperation agreement with Global Blue in which Chinese tourists can use Alipay for tax refund while shopping in Europe.
Yu’E Bao is an investment fund owned by Alipay; set up in May 2013, its size was RMB200 million (USD 32.44 million). It hit 185.3 billion yuan (USD 30.06 billion) by the end of 2013, accounted for 6% of fund market and became the largest single fund in China.