WorldRemit and Brac on track for Bangladesh payments
Via the partnership, WorldRemit customers in over 50 countries – part of “the Bangladeshi diaspora” – can send money from their phones to 1.5 million Brac accounts, 186 Brac branches for cash collection and up to 30 million Bkash mobile money wallets in the nation.
WorldRemit says this expands its footprint in the country and supports its plan to get ten million customers connected to emerging markets by 2020.
Tamer El-Emary, chief commercial officer at WorldRemit, says this partnership “will support financial inclusion by enabling the unbanked Bangladeshi population to receive remittances straight into their mobile money accounts”.
According to the firms, Bangladesh features among the top five countries with the most emigrants living abroad and is the ninth-largest recipient of remittances globally. The Central Bank of Bangladesh estimates that the country received almost $15 billion in remittances in 2017.
Recipients can transfer funds from Bkash wallets to other Bkash wallets, top-up mobile airtime, and pay for bills and groceries at shops and businesses that accept Bkash payments.
Dhaka-based Brac is focused on SMEs and has a market capitalisation of $1 billion. It was founded in 2001. The bank has 448 ATMs, 460 “SME unit offices”, and 1.5 million customers.
Bkash was licensed by the Central Bank of Bangladesh in 2010 and was launched in 2011. It now has 30 million customers.
According to Bkash, it is a joint venture of Brac, US-based Money in Motion, International Finance Corporation of World Bank Group, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Ant Financial.