Western Union takes microfinance route for rural spread
In 2009, money transfer company, Western Union, tied up with microfinance institutions (MFIs) and e-governance service providers to facilitate financial inclusion in India.
Western Union believes in tapping fortune at the bottom of the pyramid and governance and IT solutions provider, CMS Ltd, has been added as a subagent of Paul Merchants Ltd, an existing Western Union agent. CMS is into e-governance projects in India and has established more than 9,000 citizen service centers in different states to facilitate various government and business services to citizens.
To ensure that its customers can access money transfer services wherever and whenever they need it, Western Union has made a strategic decision to facilitate as many classes of trade. The customers have the choice of either using a post office, a bank, a retail store and now, an e-governance centre.
CMS has the central government’s mandate to roll out more than 17,000 e-governance locations across India as part of the e-governance agenda, which primarily targets rural citizens. CMS’s network has rural penetration in key states such as Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh. The tie-up ensures that Western Union has a presence where it makes most relevance to its customers.