Tencent launches private online bank in China

China's internet giant Tencent has launched the country's first private online-only bank.

China’s internet giant Tencent has launched the country’s first private online-only bank.

Dubbed WeBank, the new entity aims to finance credit to small scale borrowers who often find it hard to secure loans from state-owned banks.

Tencent will hold 30% stake in WeBank, investment firms Baiyeyuan Investment and Liye Group will each hold 20% stake, with the remaining 30% to be held by seven other shareholders.

China’s banking regulator last year gave green light to ten private investors, including Tencent and rival Alibaba, to set up five private banks.