The Western Union Company WU recently collaborated with CARD Bank, which is renowned as a microfinance-oriented rural bank in the Philippines. CARD Bank, being a member of CARD MRI, offers financial services for supporting socially and economically challenged families in the Philippines.
Western Union and CARD Bank together will benefit customers in the Philippines, who will be able to send and receive money across more than 200 countries and territories. The collaboration will enable customers to easily engage in money transfer transactions using Western Union’s services at more than 200 CARD Bank locations across the country. Customers will also be able to conduct such transactions at more than 1,500 other CARD MRI Offices.
Western Union believes that adequate financial services are a necessity for all as a result of which it intends to serve underprivileged customers in rural and remote regions via this tie-up. In fact, this collaboration is in sync with the company’s aim as CARD Bank was primarily established with the sole purpose of helping socially and economically challenged families across the Philippines and improve the quality of their lives.
We believe the abovementioned collaboration highlights Western Union’s efforts to strengthen presence in the Philippines, which has been recognized as the fourth-largest remittance recipient country in 2019 according to the World Bank.
Notably, Western Union already has a strong network of Agent locations in the Philippines through which it has been able to serve customers efficiently. By joining forces with CARD Bank, the company will be able to offer more locations for engaging in money transfer services across the country.
Last month, the company also teamed up with TrueMoney, a renowned financial services provider in the Philippines. The collaboration will enable customers to easily engage in money transfer transactions at more than 5,000 TrueMoney Locations across the country.
Shares of this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company have gained 8.8% in a year compared with the industry’s growth of 5.9%. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
The price performance looks decent in comparison to its peers, including Repay Holdings Corporation RPAY, PayPal Holdings, Inc. PYPL and MoneyGram International, Inc. MGI. Repay, PayPal and MoneyGram have gained 110.8%, 75.2% and 1.2%, respectively, in a year. While PayPal and MoneyGram carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy), Repay has the same rank as Western Union.
Other Initiatives Bode Well
Notably, Western Union’s Western Union Business Solutions division has extended its partnership with Banco SEMEAR in Brazil this month. Per this deal extension, the company will offer financial institutions its WU GlobalPay for FI platform, a solution to help customers make seamless international payments with greater efficiency.
The company has also been proactive in providing assistance to small businesses, which are integral to the U.S. economy and have been adversely impacted by pandemic-induced financial woes. With startups being no exception to this trend, the second class of the Techstars & Western Union Accelerator was launched last month, which is likely to provide required impetus to several startups.
These strategic actions bode well for Western Union, considering the present situation of the remittance industry that is likely to remain stressed under the coronavirus pandemic. We believe the company’s solid digital money transfer platform has somewhat helped the company to recover amid the pandemic.
Case on point, digital money transfer revenues surged 48% on a reported basis year over year in second-quarter 2020, which was released this month.
Customers preferring digital modes of money transfer over physical means amid the pandemic has reinforced the importance of online digital trading, which positions Western Union well for growth.
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