Hosting provider Cloudweb has entered into a credit card processing agreement with a Hong Kong provider so it can process orders from customers based in China through UnionPay, which will eventually enable the company to officially enter the Chinese market.
UnionPay is the only domestic bank card provider in the country, and it is used in more transactions per year than Visa. It is also the largest bankcard settlement organization in the world. The only banks allowed to independently issue UnionPay credit cards in Hong Kong and the mainland are Bank of East Asia and Citibank.
Cloudweb is owned by Seattle-based hosting company Innovative Scaling Technologies Inc. which provides VPS and managed hosting and runs brands such as Bird Hosting and Performance Hosting. Cloudweb itself uses OnApp as a SAN and a global CDN to power its standard cloud servers. Larger scale customer instances run on AppLogic clusters.
Like many other cloud providers, Cloudweb sees China as a key market for expansion.
“We plan to enter the lucrative China market as soon as possible,” Cloudweb CEO Zhi De Liao said in a statement. “China, just like the UK, is still considered an up-and-coming market by many and is about five years behind America in terms of industry penetration. This presents a good opportunity for us to enter a market in its infancy stages.”
It has become common for foreign providers to partner with Chinese organizations in order to comply with local regulations. Many major US cloud providers have announced partnerships with local providers like UnionRead, 21Vianet, Kingsoft, China Unicom, and iSoftStone to bring their particular services to market.