The hyperlocalization of Remittance services

7 mins
February 1, 2024
The Hyperlocalization of Remittance Services | Machnet Technologies

In today's interconnected world, the global economy thrives on the movement of money across borders. Families and loved ones separated by oceans and continents rely on remittance services to bridge the social and financial gap to support one another. As the remittance landscape evolves, a powerful trend is emerging that promises to reshape the industry – hyperlocalization.

Catering to the Diaspora with hyperlocalized Remittance

"Diaspora" refers to people who have spread or been dispersed from their homeland. Remittance companies that build hyperlocalized services cater to these diasporas that send remittances to their respective home countries. The term "hyperlocalization" emphasizes the level of granularity and specificity these services offer. This strategy optimizes the efficiency and convenience of remittance transactions for both the sender and receiver.

The needs of remittance recipients vary greatly across different parts of the world. The ability to provide customized solutions comes from understanding the unique needs, challenges, and aspirations of the recipients. 

Consider the variety of tailored solutions remittance companies can develop for diverse recipients worldwide. Here are a few illustrative examples:

  • Empowering rural entrepreneurs in Sub-Saharan Africa: Picture a farmer in a remote village in Sub-Saharan Africa, driving a small-scale agricultural enterprise. The remittance service provider could craft microfinance options attuned to the needs of these local entrepreneurs. These solutions might include short-term loans for procuring seeds, fertilizers, and equipment, directly supporting the growth of their businesses.
  • Enabling urban students in South Asia: Let's take an example of a university student in a bustling South Asian city, receiving financial assistance from family abroad. By collaborating with educational institutions, remittance services can facilitate direct payments for tuition, textbooks, and other academic necessities. Moreover, they can introduce a dedicated education remittance plan with reduced fees and competitive exchange rates, ensuring significant impact early in the student's academic journey.
  • Assisting elderly parents in Eastern Europe: Consider an elderly parent residing alone in a serene Eastern European village, reliant on support from overseas children. Addressing the challenges faced by these recipients, remittance services could establish partnerships with local caregivers, offering features like SMS notifications and automated updates for incoming remittances. Specialized customer support in the native language could guide managing funds for daily needs and healthcare, alleviating concerns, and even allowing parents to request assistance during healthcare emergencies.
  • Empowering remote island communities in the Pacific: Consider residents of a remote Pacific island, dependent on remittances from family working across the globe. Recognizing limited access to traditional banking, remittance services can prioritize mobile-based solutions. Partnering with local mobile networks, they can offer mobile money services, facilitating easy remittance receipt and management through smartphones, which is particularly beneficial in regions with high smartphone penetration.

By forging strategic partnerships, leveraging technology, and offering tailored financial solutions, remittance services can make a meaningful impact on the lives of diverse recipients across the globe.

Benefits of hyperlocalized Remittance services

  • Better acceptance rate: Communities will use services designed to specifically meet their needs over generic alternatives. This would have a direct impact on the bottom line, making it a prudent choice for remittance companies. Community-owned and operated businesses are preferred by locals compared to other brands, increasing the acceptance rate.
  • Reduced processing times: Hyper-localized services lead to quicker and more efficient transactions, improving the overall customer experience. This is because problems can be solved easily and quickly when customers are served by local communities.
  • Competitive exchange rates and lower fees: Concentrated operations enable remittance companies to offer better rates and reduced fees, giving them a competitive edge in the remittance market.

Building a hyperlocalized Remittance service

The advent of fintech companies specializing in payments has paved the way for hyperlocalized remittance services. Leveraging their established networks of corresponding partners across the globe, fintechs provide a seamless means for remittance companies to facilitate payments in various geographies. These localized fintech firms also boast access to native payment rails, allowing remittance companies to enable local payments as they are well connected to the local economies.

For instance, a person in the US can effortlessly load funds into an M-Pesa wallet for their recipient in Kenya or use Gopay in Indonesia or GrabPay in the Philippines if they are sending funds through the local communities that are connected on both side of the world.

By working with fintechs and utilizing their distribution networks and payment rails, remittance companies can streamline cross-border transactions, reducing processing times and costs. Fintechs often maintain pre-fund accounts and corresponding bank accounts in different geographies with licensed entities or banks, contributing to the efficiency and affordability of the remittance process. This eliminates the need to navigate complex and time-consuming banking systems to build the DTC remittance product.

Fintechs provide a developer-friendly API that seamlessly integrates various payment methods—bank transfers, e-wallets, or cash—into digital applications. This offers a flexible solution for businesses, enabling them to enhance customer convenience and expand their global reach.

Hyperlocalized remittance services represent a paradigm shift in the industry, offering tailored solutions that resonate with specific immigrant communities. With benefits ranging from optimized efficiency to competitive advantage, remittance companies are increasingly turning to hyperlocalization as the future of their operations. Through strategic partnerships with fintechs, they can leverage cutting-edge technology to redefine the way money flows across borders, benefiting both businesses and the global diaspora.

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