Western Union Digital Expands in Asia
By Digital News Asia December 19, 2018
- Malaysia and Hong Kong are already onboard
- Last year Western Union moved money into 175 countries from Singapore
THE Western Union Company, a leader in cross-border, cross-currency money movement, has launched the Western Union mobile app in Singapore, connecting customers to their families and loved ones around the world, 24/7.
Activation of the app in Singapore has given Western Union a digital trifecta in Asia this year, as Singapore now joins Hong Kong and Malaysia in benefiting from Western Union’s digital acceleration of major regional economic centres across the world.
Customers have the choice to send money directly into billions of bank accounts worldwide, mobile wallets where available or to Western Union’s more than half a million Agent locations in more than 200 countries and territories, anytime and anywhere.
Customers can pay for their transactions within the app using a choice of card or account, and also have the unique option to pay in-person at retail.
Singapore is a major hub for money movement and is the fourth largest remitter in Asia after Hong Kong, Japan and Malaysia – remitting more than US$6.1 billion last year, according to a report by IFAD titled RemitSCOPE – Remittance markets and opportunities – Asia and the Pacific.
It is propelled largely by its international standing as a popular international labour market for professionals, offering both high and low skill employment opportunities.
According to the Global Talent Competitiveness Index 2018 rankings by Insead, Singapore ranks first in the region and second globally, in attracting and developing talent. In addition, its citizens enjoy familial connections to nearly every country in the world.
Last year Western Union moved money into 175 countries from Singapore.
“We are delighted to introduce online money transfers in Singapore, where a high level of digital connectivity has offered consumers boundless possibilities to integrate mobile usage across various aspects of their daily lives.
“In addition to enjoying seamless digital money movement via the Western Union mobile app, we have also integrated the option for customers to commence their transaction within the app and pay for the transaction in person at retail,” said Molly Shea (pic), senior vice president & general manager, Global Money Transfer, Asia Pacific, Western Union.
“The capabilities of our platform today give us an unrivalled advantage – a fully seamless digital offering or a hybrid of online and off-line. This multi-channel capability utilises our growing international bank and wallet payout network and further monetizes our iconic retail network. It positions us favourably, to serve a global customer base with diverse preferences, like no other,” Shea said.
Western Union has provided money transfer service in Singapore for more than 15 years. Agent locations across the country offer customers the opportunity to send and receive money in person, from all major cities including smalls towns in remote areas.
According to the Singapore Economic Development Board, Singapore is already well on its way to attaining the benefits of digitisation, thanks to the leadership of the Singapore government and the technological maturity of its citizens, which has enabled the nation to readily adopt new strategies for delivering more efficient and effective services.
With the initiation of the Smart Nation programme, Singapore plans to drive adoption of digital and smart technologies across the country.
Western Union’s cross-border, cross-currency platform – including a robust digital footprint, settlement, treasury and compliance infrastructure, and a vast global network of over half a million locations, and the ability to send money to billions of consumer accounts and mobile wallets – sets the standard for international money movement.
With operations in 200 countries and territories, Western Union’s platform processes an average of 32 transactions every second and moves US$300 billion a year across 130 currencies.