So we recently saw this sticker at a shop in Singapore:
They accept payment by Sphere Pay, a QR based payment service pretty much like many that are mushrooming in Singapore.
So who is Sphere Pay? Who owns it? Let’s find out.
It has a nice web site indeed:
On the web site it says:
“SpherePay developed by OPG Asia Pte. Ltd. We are Asia’s leading provider of financial innovation and payment services. We are committed to the development of electronic business and operations to improve the operational efficient of society as a whole.
With the support of cloud computing, we have developed SpherePay which is a mobile application with secured online payment, fund management, consumer finance. We ensure all data are being protected and secured. This allows consumers to have a fast, hassle free and convenient experience.”
OK never mind the grammatical mistakes. We know that the company is called OPG Asia Pte. Ltd., which is obviously a Singapore registered company.
But who is behind this company? We could go to the government registrar (ACRA: www.bizfile.gov.sg) to buy the business profile which shows ownership. But there is an easier way: whois.com, which tells you the registration information about domain names.
As we can see now that sphere.money, the domain name of Sphere Pay, is registered under a certain ‘zhang zhihui’, which is obviously a Chinese name. In addition, the phone number starts with +86 21, the country and city code for Shanghai.
Let’s google this phone number:
So yes ultimately it goes to Avazu Holding, an advertising platform in China.
You can read about Avazu Holding’s 1989-born billionaire founder here: https://www.forbes.com/profile/shi-yi/