Wi-Pay has been granted an approval-in-principle by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for international money transfer operations.
In the letter received from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and signed by the acting Director of Trade and Exchange, Mr. W.D. Gotring, it was stated that upon review of its application, an approval was granted to the company to commence operations for in-bound international remittances.
The market for international inbound remittance to Nigeria is quite substantial and growing steadily. Based on 2015 figures, in excess of $21 billion was remitted to Nigeria, which accounts for the second highest source of foreign exchange flow after crude oil exports, surpassing both foreign direct and portfolio investments combined. Nigeria ranks as the leading international remittance destination in Africa and one of the top-10 global destinations according to the World Bank 2016 Remittance Fact book.
Thus far international remittance business is dominated by the legacy operators like Western Union, MoneyGram and RIA, with a combined market share of over 80 per cent, but that has gradually been eroding.
With the licensing of new digital and nimble operators like Wi-PAY GLOBAL, the emphasis will be on providing digital Peer-to-Peer (P2P) speedy, convenient and reliable remittance services to Nigerians in the Diaspora at cheaper cost, thereby saving money on unnecessarily high fees.
“The uniqueness of Wi-PAY service-offering is the “Triple-Play Strategy” that allows the company to leverage the infrastructure and customer base of local partners and affiliated companies to deliver value seamlessly, securely and cheaper under a single platform to Nigerians at home and abroad”, according to Charles Ighedo, Head of IT/Operations of the company.
Beyond international money transfer, Wi-PAY long-term strategy entails offering domestic money transfers, bill payments, airtime top-ups, airline ticket purchases, payment terminal services and other value-added services via POS terminals, online portal and mobile App.
Within the last 15 months over N1.2billion ($3.9million) in POS transactions have been processed by Wi-Pay Technologies Nigeria through a network of 430 merchant locations in Nigeria, while the fast growing online portal and mobile App have logged in over 2200 registered users.
Therefore, the current IMTO approval fits into the overall business model of the Wi-PAY ecosystem and long-term vision of becoming a leading e-payment solutions provider and world-class Fintech company.
Speaking on this latest stride, Executive Director of the company, Ms Atonye Wilcox, expressed appreciation to the CBN for the approval and excitement for the new opportunities this will open for the company. She believes that “when Wi-Pay international money transfer is successfully launched, Nigerians in the Diaspora will enjoy a new level of accessibility by conducting a multitude of financial transactions effortlessly in a secure environment at lower cost structure.”