western union
Western Union waded further into the blockchain industry, partnering with a crypto wallet provider to facilitate cross-border payments. | Source: Shutterstock

Western Union Inks Deal with Philippines-Based Crypto Wallet

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Western Union continues to make strides in entering the crypto space. Its most recent move entails a partnership with a Philippines-based e-wallet provider.

The lucky partner is Coins.ph, a blockchain-based financial services outfit whose mission includes helping people who do not have bank accounts. In addition to providing a means for crypto purchases, Coins.ph provides mobile wallets and services such as remittances, mobile air-time, and bill payments.

The partnership is being touted as a means to enable more than five million customers to receive international and domestic money transfers directly into their Coins.ph wallets in the Philippines.

The Crypto Thrilla’ in Manila

You may recall the infamous boxing match between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier that was held in Manila 1975. That fight was called the Thrilla’ in Manila and became legendary for the capital of the Philippines.

Now, the country’s leaders have been working to become legendary in the crypto space. They have developed several policies aimed at boosting its image as a crypto-friendly country. This partnership with Western Union could help it considerably.

The hope is that the integration of the Coins.ph blockchain-enabled platform and Western Union’s cross-border platform could help Filipino workers. They will be able to receive and hold international money transfers initiated from Western Union’s digital network.

In a statement, Coins.ph co-founder and CEO Ron Hose said:

“There are many overseas Filipino workers who send money back home regularly and are always looking for additional remittance options that will make it most convenient for their loved ones to receive money. By pairing Coins.ph’s payments technology with Western Union’s expansive global network, we are giving Filipinos a seamless choice to receive money digitally, on the go.”

There are an estimated 10 million1 Filipinos working or residing overseas, according to Hose.

Crypto: Right Up Western Union’s 168-Year-Old Alley?

In March, Western Union announced it was teaming up with a cross-border payments network so its customers can take advantage of mobile wallets. Through Thunes, Western Union customers can send funds directly into a recipient’s mobile wallet. All they need to do is go online or visit one of the many agent locations just as they do to make traditional transfers, CCN reported.

The world’s largest money service is also working on cryptocurrency-related patents. Documents published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in 2018 show it wants to devise a method to increase the security of electronic payments. Specifically, Western Union’s system would manage recurring transfer notifications and secure payments for a cryptocurrency network.

Finally, Western Union has trialed the ripple (XRP) cryptocurrency, though CEO Hikmet Ersek said the firm was not impressed with the early results.