The Bank will be undertaking inward cross-border money transfer activities and will be partnering with an overseas principal. It has also received the approval to partner with one of the largest global remittance service providers as its overseas principal.
According to a recent World Bank released in November 2021, India is expected to be the largest recipient of remittances globally in 2021 with an expected receipt of $87 billion. This is expected to grow by 3% in 2022 to $89.6 billion as a large number of workers are expected to return to the gulf countries. India is followed by China, Mexico, the Philippines, Egypt, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.
The customer segment of Fino Bank at the middle of the pyramid is targeted to families of many of the people working in foreign countries. They typically remit money back home to meet regular family expenses. They would already be using the services of Fino Bank like micro-ATM or Aadhaar Enabled Payment Services (AEPS) in some form. With this product, they will now be able to directly withdraw money remitted by their family members abroad at the nearest Fino Bank neighborhood merchant point.
Major Ashish Ahuja, the Chief Operating Officer said, “Continuous product innovation is one of the core pillars of our model. International remittance further enhances our transactions based product offerings. We will be ready to offer inward remittance services to our customers by Q1 FY23. In sync with our digital strategy to enhance customer experience, we will also look at having this product on our mobile application as well.
Going forward Fino Bank will be open to partnering with more leading money transfer operators (MTOs) to widen its horizon across different countries. The Bank also has plans to commence outward remittance services soon.
“There is a major inward remittance corridor in states like Gujarat, Punjab, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, and Bihar. We already have scaled up our merchant presence in all these geographies. We are therefore confident that the new offering will gain traction very quickly. We also expect to shore up more subscription-based savings accounts due to this initiative as customers would prefer to park the remitted money in a Fino Bank account itself”, added Mr. Major Ahuja.
Fino Bank had a network in excess of 8 lakh merchants across the country as of 30th September 2021. These merchants typically provide banking services to customers like opening savings accounts, depositing cash, transferring money, dispensing cash via micro-ATMs or AEPS mechanisms, and collecting cash on behalf of various institutional clients among others. With the International Remittance product, the merchants will be having another offering on their shelf which would over a period further augment their income leading to the strengthening of Fino Bank’s robust distribution network.