Earthport, the cross-border payments service provider has announced that IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has agreed to invest $10 million in the company. The funding will be used to expand Earthport’s presence and payments service infrastructure, particularly in developing countries. Through this investment, Earthport also becomes part of IFC’s extensive network which includes over 900 financial institutions, providing Earthport with access to potential partners and clients in key geographies.
Earthport’s innovative, entirely electronic account-to-account cross-border payments service facilitates a more transparent, lower cost payments infrastructure, suitable both for remittance and low value trade payments. Earthport’s service is supported by strong compliance processes, controls and a risk based analysis of clients. Through integration with Earthport’s services, banking and money transfer organisations are able to offer an increased range of international payments products to their customers.
The more widespread expansion of Earthport’s payments service into developing countries is expected to have three key benefits: it will greatly streamline and simplify sending cross-border remittances, making them more efficient and cost effective; it will improve international trading opportunities for SMEs in developing nations by removing the barriers that high costs and delays for traditional international payments create; and it will increase financial inclusion in developing nations.
In many developing nations, the annual level of international remittances from citizens working abroad can be between 7% and 35% of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Much of this continues to be carried out via traditional methods, which can be both costly and cumbersome.
“Earthport’s technology cuts the costs and delays of international money transfers, facilitating trade for SMEs and remittances for migrant workers – key priorities for IFC in helping people in developing countries improve their lives,” said Vincent Gouarne, IFC Director for Infrastructure. “We look forward to partnering with Earthport in this next stage of growth to further spread their reach in emerging markets.”
Hank Uberoi, Executive Director of Earthport plc, commented, “This significant investment from the IFC represents a strong endorsement of our leading and innovative cross-border payments service. In addition to expanding our presence in emerging markets, Earthport will also become part of the IFC’s extensive network of financial institutions globally.
“We are very proud to be affiliated with the IFC through this investment, and are committed to building our scalability and network in such a way as to provide a tangible improvement to the daily lives of millions of people and businesses in the developing nations, for whom cross-border remittances are a major source of income. Earthport’s technology provides the ideal solution to improve efficiency of remittances and other global payments.”