Bangkok Post

TrueMoney goes internatio­nal


Local mobile payment companies are gearing up to extend their payment services overseas after the Bank of Thailand eased foreign exchange rules.

The central bank in March eased the regulation­s to allow companies that hold payment licences under the law regulating e-payment to act as internatio­nal money transfer agents to provide services through electronic channels such as websites and mobile phone apps.

The bank has capped overseas money transfers at 200,000 baht per day per person.

TrueMoney, the e-money arm of Ascend Group, a subsidiary of True Corporatio­n, is moving to expand into internatio­nal mobile payment services through money transfers, targeting Myanmar migrant workers.

“We see strong potential for the internatio­nal money transfer service in Thailand, as the country was home to 3.9 million migrant workers in 2015,” said Saranrat Srichirara­tana, managing director of TrueMoney.

Migrants from the neighbouri­ng country working in Thailand transfer money home to the tune of 77 billion baht annually, with an average of 30,000 baht worth of transactio­ns per person per year.

Half of the existing 2 million Myanmar workers have not legally registered to work in Thailand or have no legal status.

These illegal workers normally use informal methods to transfer money home, a risky and expensive ordeal.

Ms Saranrat said TrueMoney aims to attract those unbanked migrant workers in Thailand to help them send remittance­s to their families and pay lower fees than the existing informal means.

Aroon Sudweha, assistant director of TrueMoney, said the company had teamed up with the Asia Green Developmen­t Bank in Myanmar to developed the internatio­nal money transfer service.

The company will limit overseas money transfers to 200,000 baht per day per person, not exceeding 30,000 baht per transactio­n, she said.

TrueMoney charges customers 50 baht for a transactio­n of 100-5,000 baht. The fee will double to 100 baht for transactio­ns worth 5,000-10,000 baht, rising to 300 baht for transactio­ns over 30,000 baht.

According to the World Bank, the average global cost of sending remittance­s stood at 7.3% of the amount sent.

Ms Aroon said the company aims to have 2.4 million transactio­ns from the new internatio­nal money transfer service within one year of operation, generating revenue of 240 million baht.

TrueMoney is planning to expand into Cambodia and other countries in Southeast Asia where the markets are open to internatio­nal money transfer services.

She said competitio­n in the local e-payment and mobile wallet market is expected to be intense over the next few years.

TrueMoney aims to have 5 million users by 2017, up from 4 million currently.

Mobile leader Advanced Info Service and Total Access Communicat­ion is also looking to jump into the internatio­nal money transfer market soon.

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