On Friday, the Financial Times reported that WorldFirst "suddenly shut down" US business to avoid "redirecting American regulators". That document mentioned two people as a decision. WorldFirst's US operations were conducted in Austin, Texas, and the company also had employees in San Francisco. One person, FT, said that as a result of the movement, US workers would lose hard work.
WorldFirst did not respond to comments.
This is the latest example that the US and China have increased the damage associated with trade imbalances, as well as the possible theft of intellectual property by Chinese firms. Both governments have set the beginning of March to reach an agreement on a trade deal. Meanwhile, Trump's administration has blocked large deals, such as Chinese companies investing heavily in US companies, and purchasing certain US technology components, demanding such transactions to pose a threat to national security.
WorldFirst is one of the major services used by Amazon vendors for worldwide transactions, so merchants can get paid in many different currencies on the same platform. The Amazon vendor group sent email to members on Friday stating that WorldFirst customers are switching to a competitive Payoneer service that "can help if you sell to the US, UK, Europe, Canada, Japan, China, Australia, and Mexico", the message.
WorldFirst's service to customers outside the US and Canada will not change. Customers from these two countries were informed that they could only make outgoing transfers to existing recipients between 31 January and 7 February. After February 7, all balances will be returned to the sender, and after February 20, the company will not have a live or email service.
Ant, the expected acquisition of WorldFirst supports the company's global drive and expansion beyond the mobile and online payment service Alipay. Second Chief Executive Eric Ying told CNBC in November that his company is investing in technology services to banks, so that it is not limited to payments.
Ant is considered an IPO candidate, but Jing said the company had no "schedule for it." A year ago, Alibaba agreed to buy 33 percent of Anta and said it would not control the company. Alipay was expelled from Alibaba in 2011.
WATCH: Ant Financial says it has no "timeline" for the IPO