Disrupting Remittances Through Mobile Money in Uganda
Wednesday, August 12, 2015
The money remittance industry sees over US$34 billion sent to sub-Saharan Africa each year, accounting for an average of 5 per cent of GDP on a country-by-country basis. However, for those sending and receiving money, the systems in place are inefficient and time-consuming.
But fear not, Ugandan startup Remit.ug is changing that.
Remit.ug is leveraging the benefits of online and mobile money technologies to make remittances simple and immediate, regardless of urban or rural location.
The Remit online platform allows money to be sent with the click of a button, with funds delivered straight to the recipient’s mobile phone allowing money to be cashed out at local neighborhood mobile money agents, instead of requiring a recipient to spend time and money taking trips to traditional money transfer agents.
“With the established money transfer companies, sending money happens at a physical agent location, so you have to take out cash and drive to the agent, produce IDs and then you get to send the money,” explains Remit co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO) Stone Atwine.
“Then the recipient is in trouble if they live in a rural area. I used to send money to my grandma and she would have to take a 60 minute bus trip just to cash out. It costs more to get there and cash out,” he says.