BankTech

WorldRemit Expands to Offer Mobile Money Service in Uganda

$733 Mn of remittance payments were sent to Uganda through formal channels in 2012, amounting to 3.7% of the country's GDP, according to the World Bank. On 7th May 2014, it was announced that WorldRemit has expanded its service in Uganda to enable customers to transfer money to mobile wallets. The global online money company is set to provide this new service in order to increase the payout options available for users sending money to Uganda. WorldRemit has recently secured a $40 million investment from Accel Partners.

  • So far, users could send money to the country by utilizing cash pickup, bank deposit as well as airtime top-up services.
  • The mobile wallet service allows the person at the other end to receive money quickly and securely on their mobile phones through MTN Mobile Money.
  • Once they have the money, customers can use their mobile wallets for many purposes, such as paying utility bills, buying airtime or withdrawing cash from authorised agents.
  • Uganda has seen rapid growth of mobile money transfers and airtime top up due to its high mobile phone penetration in Africa.
  • At the moment, 35% of WorldRemit's transactions to Uganda are going to mobiles, but the company expects this figure to reach up to 80%.
  • WorldRemit says that, with its online-only, cashless business model, it offers a more efficient, affordable and not to mention transparent - remittance alternative to traditional money transfer establishments.
  • users can send funds from 35 countries to families and friends in more than 100 destinations, with the requirement of only Internet access.

WorldRemit is a global online money transfer business. Migrants and expats from 34 countries can make online payments to families and friends in over 100 destinations. WorldRemit offers a wide range of options to send and receive payments. Senders can make payments online, through smartphones or tablets, by debit or credit card, or via bank transfer. Recipients can get paid via bank deposit, direct transfers to mobile wallets, cash pickup or delivery, or airtime top-up for their mobile phones.

Atleast 3 people who have spent more than a decade chasing Mobile Payments and Money business models have told me secretly that till 2012/13 even they used cheques (US checkbook is with their parents abroad in their native country). What does it mean? Remittance experience was broken for us, for the payment experts and for probably everybody. The Moneygram’s and Western Union’s of the world had not solved the problem. Either the charges were so high or the method was so complex and risky that people found it difficult to enjoy sending money home. I have high hopes from online/mobile and Bitcoin related innovations happening in remittance business.

Chiraag Patel

Chiraag Patel is a Senior Reporting Analyst and the Editor of Bitcoin and Virtual Currency channels at Lets Talk Payments. He is an engineer with deep interest in MMORPG, Virtual Banking, Game Currency and Virtual Cash. Chiraag enjoys Reading& Blogging with focus on New Innovation, Technology & Startups in the Payments Space.

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