The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU), a leader in global payment services, and WeChat, a leading social communication platform owned by Tencent Holdings Limited, today announced an agreement which gives users of WeChat in the United States the ability to send money cross-border to 200 countries and territories via the company’s WU Connect platform.
This collaboration further solidifies Western Union as a market leader in the digital money transfer space by providing customers a fast and easy way to receive money based on their needs. The agreement also marks WeChat as the first social communication application to provide a technology platform to support person-to-person cross-border money transfer capabilities to more than 200 countries and territories. The capability is now available to WeChat users in the United States, with planned rollouts to additional countries in the future.
“Western Union's omni-channel strategy is combining our digital presence with our distribution network that pays out in over 200 countries and territories,” said Hikmet Ersek, CEO, Western Union. “Given the proliferation of social media around the world, we are expanding our activities in this exciting area. It only makes sense to include the WeChat platform as part of the company’s innovative digital money transfer capabilities. By teaming with WeChat and deploying the WU Connect platform to its U.S. users, Western Union is offering yet another new method for consumers to move money worldwide.”
The recently announced WU Connect platform embeds Western Union’s robust global money transfer capability into third-party digital platforms to provide users with new ways to quickly and conveniently send money to friends and family. Consumers are able to fund the money transfer utilizing a debit card, credit card or bank account and easily direct the funds to a Western Union retail agent location around the world, and to a mobile wallet or bank account where available.
WeChat is one of the world's fastest growing social apps, innovating new ways to connect, communicate and share. WeChat together with its sister product Weixin in China had over 650 million of monthly active user accounts at end of September 2015, bringing together messaging, social communication and games all within on easy-to-use app. Users can choose to send free text and multimedia messages, make video calls or share photos on their closed Moments social network.