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AMERICAN EXPRESS COMPANY (AXP)
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American Express : China PBOC Gives American Express the Green Light to Set Up Clearing JV

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11/09/2018 | 04:01am EST

BEIJING--American Express Co. received approval from China's central bank to set up a joint venture to offer bank-card clearing services in the country, where the business is dominated by a state-owned company.

The U.S. card network is the first foreign card network to receive permission to offer clearing services in China, after a long-time pledge by Beijing to further open up its financial markets.

The Wall Street Journal reported in April that China's central bank had informed the New York-based card issuer that it would "formally accept" its application to clear and settle domestic bank-card transactions. AmEx has applied to establish a joint venture with Chinese mobile-payment provider Lianlian Group.

The People's Bank of China said in a statement on its website Friday that the JV will be given one year to prepare and can apply to begin operations after that. The central bank also said it would allow more foreign service providers to enter China's bank-card clearing business in an orderly manner, but didn't provide a time frame.

Currently, China's bank-card clearing business is dominated by state-run Unionpay Co.

Write to Grace Zhu at grace.zhu@wsj.com

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Financials ($)
Sales 2018 40 442 M
EBIT 2018 11 654 M
Net income 2018 6 355 M
Debt 2018 -
Yield 2018 1,50%
P/E ratio 2018 13,34
P/E ratio 2019 12,15
Capi. / Sales 2018 2,08x
Capi. / Sales 2019 1,93x
Capitalization 84 094 M
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 30
Average target price 112 $
Spread / Average Target 14%
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Managers
NameTitle
Stephen J. Squeri Chairman & Chief Executive Officer
Jeffrey C. Campbell Chief Financial Officer & Executive Vice President
Marc D. Gordon Chief Information Officer & Executive VP
Charlene Barshefsky Independent Director
Peter F. Chernin Independent Director
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