International mobile money transfer firm WorldRemit is in the midst of a broad expansion of its services to various global regions, relying on a handful of strategic partners with a focus on new regions.
WorldRemit in December dramatically expanded its territory by adding thousands of new cash pickup locations in Russia, Africa and Asia through agent partnerships with banks, foreign-currency exchange bureaus, mobile telecom service stores and other institutions with accessible local branches and retail outlets, said Alix Murphy, WorldRemit’s director of mobile partnerships.
“It makes sense to work directly with known and trusted local institutions who already have a wide network of customers, so that when a user of WorldRemit’s service sends money to their recipient, the funds can be received swiftly and directly at a branch, or into their recipient’s bank or mobile money account, with any of these local partners,” Murphy said.
In some markets, WorldRemit leans on direct partnerships with global strategic partners including Xpress Money, GTBank and telecom operator MTN to penetrate new markets, she noted.
“Partnerships also offer us the opportunity to conduct coordinated marketing campaigns to reach customers in both send receive markets,” Murphy said.
In Russia, WorldRemit this month established its first partnership with Russian payments operator Contact, enabling consumers to pick up cash sent via WorldRemit at more than 5,000 Contact outlets.
WorldRemit also expanded its reach in Africa and the Middle East, with new connections in Uganda, Ethiopia, Lebanon and Algeria.
Ugandan consumers may pick up cash sent via WorldRemit at any branch of Pride Microfinance, Diamond Trust Bank and Ugafode Microfinance. In Ethiopia, recipients of funds sent via WorldRemit may pick up cash at any branch of 14 banks in the nation. In Lebanon, WorldRemit operates through a partnership with Wings International, which has 130 branches in the nation, and in Algeria it reaches consumers through a partnership with Trust Bank Algeria.
In Asia, where WorldRemit already has a presence in Vietnam, the company this month reached Pakistan for the first time through its Xpress Money partnership, enabling WorldRemit customers to pick up cash at more than 9,500 locations including the branches of several major banks. WorldRemit also is available now in Bangladesh, where recipients can pick up cash at branches of most major banks.
WorldRemit, with headquarters in London and Denver, Colo., serves consumers in more than 50 countries who may send funds instantly online and through mobile devices to more than 125 destinations. The company in recent months has also set plans in motion to obtain money-transmitter licenses in all U.S. states where they are available.