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Western Union emerges as global digital front runner

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(© Worawut – stock.adobe.com)

Western Union serves more than 150 million customers from 200 nations across the world. Additionally, the fintech giant has made some technological developments in its digital payment platform, making it a front runner in cross-border money transfers.

But how did it get here?

Global digital payment leaders

Western Union has been on a tear recently, recording double-digit growth, both before the pandemic and after; a growing number of consumers across the globe are using its digital payment systems when remitting money to family and friends.

Overall, its revenues from digital money transfer systems increased by a whopping 38% within a year. I.e., from approximately $600 million in 2019 to $850 million in 2020.

Surprisingly, the fintech leader observed a 45% revenue increment in the first quarter of 2021, positioning it to earn an estimated $1 billion in 2021. As if that’s not enough, the 1st quarter of 2021 is the fourth consecutive one experiencing more than 50% transactional growth. Additionally, its monthly active users also grew by 46% in Q1 2021.

Most of the company’s success is attributable to its steadfast commitment to enhancing the customer’s online experience. This includes:

  • Improved visibility into transaction flow
  • Shorter registration periods
  • Optimal web performance

As a result of these improvements, Western Union’s money transfer app was downloaded 78% more times than the closest competitors.

Customer growth

The US, UK, France, Australia, and Germany are the top five countries behind Western Union’s digital growth. Also, besides spearheading digital money transfers globally, it is the leader in all five countries, apart from the UK.

Due to the enhanced digital experience, customer-to-customer transactions increased by 9%, led by a 77% increase in digital money transfer deals. As a result, the service provider recorded the most active website users in history, with around 9 million active customers.

Changing with the times

On March 26, 2020, Western Union launched “Digital Location,” a new medium for their customers to enjoy a personalized experience sending money from the comfort of their homes. This initiative was to keep vital money transfer services available to consumers during movement limitations and some temporary location closures due to COVID-19.

The company is a proponent of hands-on service, which has been a crucial part of the customer experience at retail agent locations. Consequently, the program allowed customers from various parts of the world to connect to customer service agents via phone or video call for assistance.

Subsequently, customers could complete their electronic transactions funded by credit or debit card. Although the digital location service rolled out in Belgium, Italy, Portugal, Oman, and Austria, the fintech leader intends to expand the amenity to more countries across the globe.

Spearheading cross-border remittance globally

Undeniably, Western Union has built the most outstanding money transfer network, traversing all borders and unrestricted by currency. Here’s some perspective. Its global network coverage traverses over 200 countries, covering about 130 currencies globally.

Today, consumers from more than 70 countries can easily send money worldwide, check exchange rates and prices, and track their transactions at westernunion.com. What’s more, the mobile app is available to people in more than 40 countries.

Even better, you also have the option to deposit money directly into billions of banks, wallets, and retail agents worldwide.

What the future holds

It seems like the sky’s the limit for this fintech giant as they continue enhancing their digital platforms and forging new partnerships with monetary institutions. In May 2021, Western Union joined forces with Google to offer US residents access to its now revered money transfer experience through Google Pay.

The ability to adapt to the times, merged with a profound desire to connect people across the globe, has propelled this fintech giant to the top of the cross-border money transfer food chain. Will it remain there?


augusta free press news
augusta free press news


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