Today, you can send money to anyone in the Philippines over the Stellar network–for near free.
Using one of several money service businesses connected to the Stellar network, like Tempo of BFC Bahrain, users can request for payments to be sent to a Coins.ph wallet. Payments deposited into a Coins.ph wallet are free for the recipient, and they can then cash out at any of Coins.ph‘s 22,000 locations, or directly perform bill pay. And this is just the start!
This will make a huge difference in the lives of millions of people–overseas Filipino workers around the world sent $26.92 billion back to the Philippines in 2015, making the Philippines the third largest remittance market in the world.
Before we share the really exciting news about the other organizations coming on board, I just wanted to take a moment to appreciate this step forward in achieving our mission: enabling a worldwide financial network that anyone can use.
Please welcome Coins.ph, Flutterwave, ICICI, and Tempo to the Stellar ecosystem and community. These organizations coming onboard means that their customers will be able to move money from France to Nigeria to Kenya to India in real-time and securely. We’re happy they made the decision to integrate with Stellar because of efficiency and cost, and excited to see the Stellar universe expand exponentially.
A bit about our new partners:
Coins.ph, a leading mobile financial services provider for the underbanked in Southeast Asia, has announced that its Stellar integration is now live. People can now send money to anyone in the Philippines that has a phone number using a Stellar wallet or from any institution connected to the Stellar network.
Flutterwave, a cutting-edge pan-African financial technology and services company, will use Stellar to support cross-border payments to M-Pesa, a mobile platform for money transfer and financial services. For the 21 million M-Pesa users who are limited to transacting in Kenya, this move will expand their ability to send payments regardless of whether they are based in Kenya, Ghana or Nigeria.
ICICI Bank, India’s largest private sector bank by consolidated assets, is integrating with the Stellar network to support money transfers internationally and within India. ICICI Bank is working to launch a pilot program on Stellar for cross-border payments without traditional wire fees. Additionally, ICICI Bank is launching a mobile wallet application with a Stellar backend for university and office campuses, which they will potentially roll out to a larger customer base.
Raj Chowdhury, Head of the Blockchain initiative, ICICI Bank said:
With blockchain technology we are able to conduct business seamlessly with parties with which we had no prior relationships. Blockchain platforms such as Stellar.org are providing us with an automated technology solution to establish trust without the need for an intermediary. This technology is enabling us to conduct business a lot quicker, cheaper with lower error rates and lower vulnerability to cyber threats. It is helping us eradicate the need for post transaction settlements which are cumbersome and expensive. We envision blockchain technology playing a key role in banking in the years ahead.
Tempo Money Transfer, a high-tech European licensed remittance provider headquartered in Paris has integrated with the Stellar network. People can now send global remittances from Europe through Tempo, and to other financial institutions, such as Coins.ph in the Philippines, which are connected to the Stellar network.
Why this is powerful is that, by integrating with Stellar, all of these organizations will immediately gain access to all the other institutions on the Stellar network, enabling their customers to send and receive low-cost and instant money transfers.
And likewise any new financial institution that joins the Stellar network will also be able to transact directly with Coins.ph, ICICI, Flutterwave and Tempo--accessing their large and diverse customer bases.
These partnerships are helping real people’s lives—here we have some of the first, on-the-ground use cases of "blockchain" improving the world we live in. We’re proud of that.
In 2017 and beyond, we will keep adding partners to the network, continuing our mission of making a massive impact in how money moves around the world.