Tencent launches rating system WeChat Payments Score

By Folake Dosu  |  January 22, 2019

Tencent is analyzing the consumer data points it gathers from over a billion daily users of WeChat who use the platform to chat, read, shop, hail rents, rent products and run other errands to create a rating system to assess whether a user has access to certain perks such as deposit-free renting services, reports TechCrunch.

Called the “WeChat Payments Score” in Chinese, the rating system soft-launched last November and has been piloting on select apps, according to the outlet. Xiaodian, a power bank rental service backed by Tencent, is one of the apps. Users who reach a specific point threshold receive deposit waivers for rentals. TechCrunch notes that these perks could be enough to entice WeChat customer to try out WeChat’s many in-house and third-party offerings.

While the company has not disclosed its method to point calculation, TechCrunch says that tests in-house demonstrate that shopping and contract-fulfilling records are among its factors, while it awaits more information from Tencent. 

TechCrunch notes that Tencent had an earlier foray into credit rating, when the Chinese government encouraged tech companies use their platforms in state-approved pilot projects to assess the creditworthiness of millions of people without financial records. 

TechCrunch notes that Tencent had an earlier foray into credit rating, when the Chinese government encouraged tech companies use their platforms in state-approved pilot projects to assess the creditworthiness of millions of people without financial records. 

The financial climate changed when the government decided against the use of personal information by online lending companies and established Baihang Credit, the only market-based personal credit agency approved by China’s central bank, in 2018. Tencent, among other private firms, took part in the initiative in a limited capacity and holds 8 percent shares compared to the government’s 36 percent stake in Baihang.

Credit ratings typically focus on financial trustworthiness, but in a controversial move, China plans to enroll everyone in a national database that factors social and moral history, in addition to financial history, by 2020, TechCrunch adds.

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