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With a $140m war chest, UK-based remittance service WorldRemit expands into the US

With a $140m war chest from Accel Partners, TCV and Silicon Valley Bank, digital money transfer service WorldRemit has launched in the US, Western Union and Moneygram’s turf, aiming to  revolutionize the $135 billion US remittance market with its mobile to mobile remittance service.

“We’re excited to bring mobile-to-mobile remittances to millions of migrants in the United States.” said Ismail Ahmed, founder and CEO at of WorldRemit. A Filipino nurse in San Francisco or a Kenyan taxi driver in Miami can now send money back home instantly – supporting the transition from costly offline remittances sent from bricks-and-mortar agents to faster, safer and lower cost online transfer methods.”

WorldRemit was getting more than 10% of its revenues a year from the US and the business was growing by 250% year on year. Now with licenses in almost all states, the US is expected to become WorldRemit’s largest send market, accounting for up to 40% of revenues in the next few years

The US is the world’s biggest sender of remittances according to the World Bank, totalling almost $135bn a year of the $600bn global market. Collectively, US migrants send almost double the amount the US government spends on international development, so remittances represent a powerful and direct force for overseas development.

WorldRemit facilitates more than 600,000 transactions a month, from over 50 countries to 140+ destinations and has more than 6,000 money transfer corridors.

Just recently, WorldRemit partnered with Kenya’s KCB for incoming transfers and announced plans to launch operations in Kenya. Later it also signed a partnership with Morocco’s Wafacash for its 1620 cash pick up locations all over the country.

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