Western Union and 7-Eleven Form Mexican Remittance Alliance

Western Union

Western Union has teamed with 7-Eleven to tap into Mexico’s $53 billion remittance market.

The money transfer service announced its partnership with 7-Eleven Mexico Wednesday (March 1), saying it will let consumers in Mexico send and receive money from more than 1,800 7-Eleven stores in the country to the 200-plus countries where Western Union operates.

The move comes as Western Union is working to reclaim what it sees as a zero-sum market share stolen by competitors by revitalizing its core digital remittance service.

That effort includes the company’s ongoing efforts in Mexico, where — according to Bank of Mexico figures cited in Western Union’s news release — the total income from remittance for the first 10 months of 2022 was $53 billion.

That’s up 13.5% from the $46 billion reported during the same time frame in 2021. The report also notes that 99% of the income from remittances was made through electronic transfers.

As PYMNTS has written, Western Union has said that it is at a strategic inflection point, deploying a new strategy called “Evolve 2025” to help modernize its business model.

That means “developing and delivering products that drive financial inclusion and enable our customers to move up the ladder of financial well-being,” as Western Union CEO Devin McGranahan put it recently.

In doing so, McGranahan said, Western Union can establish itself as “the leading provider of branded accessible financial services to the aspiring populations of the world,” introducing its digital banking and digital wallet services to several new territories this year.

The company last year launched a partnership with South American eCommerce giant MercadoLibre to allow digital remittances to be sent in Mexico.

And last week, Western Union teamed with Australia’s BeforePay in a collaboration that combines Western Union’s cross-border, cross-currency money movement service and Beforepay’s wage-advance product.

In an interview with PYMNTS late last year, Massimiliano Alvisini, Western Union’s general manager and senior vice president for Europe CIS and Africa, spoke about the importance of adaptability in the money transfer sector.

For Western Union, that’s meant multiple reinventions, including its latest efforts to offer omnichannel financial services.

He also acknowledged that there are obstacles in the move toward greater digitization of payments. For example, there is still work to be done in Europe to do away with fragmentation across multiple payment markets.

“That’s what I believe is the next step to creating a level of harmonization that allows the use of new technologies to give people a better experience, keep the financial service industry safe and drive growth and prosperity for millions of people,” Alvisini told PYMNTS.