NEW DELHI :
Bharti Airtel and cross-border payments facilitator Western Union have come together to launch a real-time payments service for Airtel customers across India and Africa, the telecom operator said in a statement on Wednesday.
Bhart Airtel already offers Airtel Payments Bank service in India and a mobile wallet offering across 14 countries in Africa.
Western Union’s collaboration with Airtel Payments Bank in India will offer another channel for real-time cross-border money movement into India, the company said. Airtel Payments Bank customers can soon direct a Western Union money transfer into their bank accounts 24/7 via their app real-time.
The collaboration with Airtel Africa will enable more than 15 million Airtel Money mobile wallet users in Nigeria, Uganda, Gabon, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Madagascar, Kenya, Congo, Niger, Tchad, Rwanda and Seychelles to route money transfer received from overseas into their wallets.
Senders from overseas would also be able to push funds directly to an Airtel Money mobile wallet in real-time and store value or pay for goods and services.
The service will be launched this year, Bharti Airtel said.
“International remittances into Africa are a lifeline to some of our customers. This partnership will give our customers the convenience and security of directly receiving and sending remittances from their Airtel mobile money wallets. They will now be automatically credited and debited via their Airtel mobile money wallets on their phone and can immediately access the funds to pay bills or merchants and transfer funds to family and friends or convert to cash from the widespread Airtel Money agents, kiosks and branches," Raghunath Mandava, CEO of Airtel Africa, said in a statement.
Western Union has more than 40 banking and payment partnerships in over 100 countries.