Ant Group approved to operate new consumer finance company

China has given its approval to Ant Group to operate a consumer finance company, a key positive step in the forced restructuring of its business just months after regulators slammed the breaks on its record-breaking listing, CNBC reports.

Ant will hold a 50 percent stake in the new entity and contribute 4 billion Chinese yuan (US$625.93 million) in registered capital, the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission said on Thursday.

Another six shareholders will contribute 4 billion yuan and hold the remaining 50 percent. The company will be registered in the southwestern city of Chongqing with a total registered capital of 8 billion yuan.

The business will be able to give out personal loans and issue bonds among other things. The consumer finance company will also house Ant’s credit businesses Huabei and Jiebei. These are critical for the company and previously big drivers of revenue.

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