Alibaba’s fintech arm Ant Group continues undergoing restructuring with the latest closure of the world’s largest mutual aid platform.
Mutual aid platform Xianghubao will close next month on January 28, according to a notice from Ant sent to users yesterday.
This marks the latest move in China’s ongoing crackdown on financial services in the technology sector which included a focus on mutual aid insurance platforms. 
In March, insurance technology firm Waterdrop – backed by Alibaba rival Tencent – also closed its mutual aids business. Search engine Baidu closed its mutual insurance platform in August 2020 while food delivery giant Meituan shut its mutual aid platform in February this year.
Xianghubao – meaning «protect each other» in Chinese – launched in 2018 and went on to house more than 100 million registered users to become the world’s largest mutual aid platform. 
This business is especially popular amongst low and middle income households in rural areas that often lack access to quality healthcare.
In its first full year of operations, each member paid 29.17 yuan on average for coverage and over the past three years, it provided aid to about 180,000 ill persons.

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