Remitly Mobile Money Service Gets More Personal

Mobile remittance service Remitly said Tuesday (July 14) that it has acquired mobile messaging outfit Talio.

The terms of the agreement were not disclosed, but Remitly said it is bringing Talio’s entire roster of founders, developers and engineers on board. Talio’s founders Piragash Velummylum and Jordan Timmermann will also be joining Remitly in order to focus on product development.

The deal will help bolster the mobile remittance side of Remitly’s offerings (where users can send money from the U.S. to the Philippines and also to India), as Talio has a picture and messaging app in place that lets users add captions. Remitly said that the Talio buy will continue its focus on developing message features.

Remitly has said it was the first mobile payments company to offer Apple’s Touch ID for iOS users. The product development team, now bolstered by the Talio development professionals, will accelerate the advancement of new features and services on Remitly’s iOS and Android apps.

In addition to the deal with Talio, Remitly said that its customers are sending $300 million on an annual basis through the remittance app and said that its customer base grew by 400 percent year over year in 2014. The company closed a $12.5 million round of Series B financing earlier this year.

Talio investors, ranging from Vulcan Capital to Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff to Richard Kiphart, a William Blair & Co. principal, among others, will become Remitly investors.

“Sending money home to loved ones is an extremely personal gesture. We want to build mobile apps that create richer connections for our customers,” said Matt Oppenheimer, Remitly’s CEO, in the release detailing the transaction.

“Talio’s deep expertise in innovative forms of mobile messaging — immersive images and video — was very attractive to us,” Oppenheimer continued. "Combining mobile payments with mobile messaging is uncharted territory in our industry. We want to create mobile connections that today nobody can imagine.”


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