Western Union Marks 20 Years in Africa; Continues to Expand its Retail, Mobile and Digital Channels

Press Release By Western Union Published OnNovember 16, 2015

LIBREVILLE, Gabon–(BUSINESS WIRE)– This week, The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU), a leader in global payment services, will celebrate 20 years of providing cross-border money movement solutions to consumers in Africa and African diaspora living outside of their home countries.

Over two decades, Western Union has expanded the choice for consumers both through its extensive retail network on the continent and with new digital capabilities through technology advances, facilitating access to Africa’s most urban and rural areas. Today, consumers have the choice of using multi-channels to send or receive remittances from more than 200 countries and territories – either using the company’s 35,000 walk-in retail locations in Africa, or through connections to millions of bank accounts and mobile wallets in more than 50 countries and territories across Africa. The Western Union network serves millions of senders and receivers with a choice of more than 130 currencies.

“Together with our global Agent network, our mobile and other digital technologies are fostering new economic opportunities for individuals and businesses across Africa,” said Western Union President and CEO Hikmet Ersek, who will discuss how Western Union’s technology solutions, in combination with its global pay-in, pay-out network, are fostering economic development and financial inclusion for consumers and businesses with government ministers, business leaders, trade associations, agent partners and officials from Morocco, Gabon and other African nations.

“Western Union is revolutionizing the remittance market by reinventing cross-border money transfer and payments solutions. Our digital services, offered together with our retail capabilities, are enabling Africans and citizens around the world to effectively and efficiently transfer money and realize their economic potential.”

During the visit, the Western Union Foundation will award a total of US$200,000 in grants, in partnership with Western Union Agents, to three different NGOs across the continent, namely SOS Children’s Villages in Morocco, Attawfiq Micro-Finance in Morocco and to the Ecole Nationale pour Les Enfants Deficients Auditifs (National School for Hearing Impaired Children, ENEDA) in Gabon, as part of Western Union Education for Better program.

Western Union has established a track record of evolving the ‘funds-in, funds-out’ model in anticipation of consumer needs, including mobile adoption. Recently, the company launched WU® Connect?, a new technology platform that integrates with leading consumer messaging and social media platforms providing users a unique way to conveniently transfer money.

“Western Union has a 164-year history in the finance industry. Through innovation, we strive to create an integrated consumer experience where the power of online and mobile technology supports our retail Agent network capabilities, and gives consumers and businesses an easy way to send money to nearly anywhere around the world, from the palm of their hand,” added Ersek.

“Africans are embracing new technologies,” said Aida Diarra, Regional Vice President and Head of Africa, Western Union. “We pride ourselves on being ahead of the trend and are pleased to be on the ground, playing a role in enabling a world of possibilities for Africa.”

About Western Union

The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU) is a leader in global payment services. Together with its Vigo, Orlandi Valuta, Pago Facil and Western Union Business Solutions branded payment services, Western Union provides consumers and businesses with fast, reliable and convenient ways to send and receive money around the world, to send payments and to purchase money orders. As of September 30, 2015, the Western Union, Vigo and Orlandi Valuta branded services were offered through a combined network of over 500,000 agent locations in 200 countries and territories and over 100,000 ATMs and kiosks, and included the capability to send money to hundreds of millions of accounts. In 2014, The Western Union Company completed 255 million consumer-to-consumer transactions worldwide, moving $85 billion of principal between consumers, and 484 million business payments. For more information, visit www.WesternUnion.com.

About the Western Union Foundation

The Western Union Foundation is dedicated to creating a better world, where the ability to realize dreams through economic opportunity is not just a privilege for the few but a right for all. Through its signature program, Education for Better, and with the support of The Western Union Company, its employees, Agents, and business partners, The Western Union Foundation works to realize this vision by supporting education and disaster relief efforts as pathways toward a better future. Our combined social ventures efforts make life better for individuals, families and communities around the world. Since its inception, The Western Union Foundation has paid more than $104 million in grants and other giving. These funds have been pledged to more than 2,918 nongovernmental organizations in more than 136 countries and territories. The Western Union Foundation is a separate §501(c)(3) recognized United States charity. To learn more, visit www.westernunionfoundation.org, or Follow us on Twitter @TheWUFoundation.


Source: The Western Union Company

Western Union Media Contact:

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