MoneyGram International (NYSE: MGI), a leading global money transfer company, announced today at a news conference in Flushing, New York, the introduction of a cash-to-account service with Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), one of China's largest banks.
With the new service, consumers can now send money directly into ICBC bank accounts in China. ICBC has locations across China and manages more than 269 million personal banking customers.
ICBC has been a MoneyGram cash payout agent since 1995 and has more than 1,500 locations offering MoneyGram service in about 400 cities.
"Launching our cash-to-account program with ICBC gives us greater reach and the ability to provide an extra level of convenience for our customers who are receiving money in China," said Stuart Kiefer, MoneyGram's vice president of product management.
The service will be marketed at MoneyGram locations in select areas that have large populations of Chinese immigrants and migrant workers. According to the World Bank, China received more than $51 billion in remittances from all over the world in 2010, making it the second-largest receiver of money transfers in the world.
According to ICBC, adding the cash-to-account product is a strong manifestation of the company's commitment to better serve the needs of Chinese overseas and their beneficiaries in China. ICBC's partnership with MoneyGram boosts the company's efforts to reach more of the Chinese living abroad.
In addition to the U.S., the service of sending directly to ICBC accounts will also be available to customers in 20 other markets, including UK, Greece, Germany, Hong Kong, Australia and Japan.
MoneyGram also offers cash-to-account money transfer services at select agent locations into Poland, Mexico and the Philippines.