International

Western Union Expands Banking Tie-Up In Brazil

Western Union

Western Union Co., the cross-currency payments and money mover, announced Thursday (Aug. 6) it has expanded services between its business solutions division and Banco Semear, the Brazil bank, to offer GlobalPay.

The payment network for financial institutions provides the benefits of international payment services without the need to invest in banking systems infrastructure, the company said.

Western Union Business Solutions’ online platform allows for processing transactions using a network that spans more than 200 countries and territories, and is available in more than 130 currencies. Western Union calls it a simple system that facilitates the creation of international payments.

“We are very pleased to expand our collaboration with Banco Semear through the integration of GlobalPay,” said Alberto Roncajolo, Western Union Business Solutions head of financial institutions for Latin America and the Caribbean, in a statement.

Western Union Business Solutions allows organizations to optimize currency movements between different countries with customized solutions for sending, receiving, and managing international payments, the company said.

“The partnership with Western Union Business Solutions consists of expanding the portfolio of products already offered by Banco Semear,” said Arthur Campos, superintendent of Banco Semear in a statement. “The strategic objective is to integrate new operations into the current structure, allowing the leverage and expansion of the institution's business and target audience.”

On Tuesday (Aug 4), Western Union reported overall revenue dropped 17 percent year over year to $1.1 billion.

Earnings also fell sharply to $161.9 million, 39 cents per share, from $614.8 million, $1.43 per share, a year ago. Still, it beat analyst’s modest estimate of 35 cents per share in earnings.

Chief Financial Officer Raj Agrawal told PYMNTS that Q2’s digital growth was “unbelievable” as the number of active customers increased by 45 percent compared to last year.

“The great thing about us is that 80 percent of these new customers visiting WU.com are also wholly new to Western Union,” he said. “This is not a shift because this digital growth isn’t coming at the expense of our retail business so much as it is about getting new customers to the category and other customers from other parts of the remittance market, like banks and other digital financial services providers.”

Earlier this year, Western Union said it expanded its global network for real-time payments and transfers to 50 additional countries when paid into certain banks and digital wallets.
Hikmet Ersek, president and CEO of Western Union, said the company has stepped up the expansion of its digital money transfer capabilities, which is especially important “given the critical nature of money movement” during the coronavirus pandemic.

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