Google Pay users in the United States (US) can now transfer money to India as well as Singapore. Alphabet Inc’s Google has announced its international money transfer partnerships with remittances firms Wise and Western Union.
The service would be expanded to the 80 countries available via Wise and 200 via Western Union by the end of 2021.
As per an official statement, Google’s foray in the $470 billion US market marks a further step by the tech giant to expand its financial services, coping up competition in the digital payment sector. While London-based Wise was launched in 2011, aiming to make international money transfers cheaper and easier. Western Union remains a market leader in remittances with a sprawling global network of physical locations.
With 150 million users in 40 countries, their collaboration with Google Pay comes as the Covid-19 pandemic has led to a boom in online payments. However, an estimated drop in overall remittances has been observed. The money migrant workers transferred home is anticipated to have declined 14% from 2019 due to worsening economic conditions and employment levels in migrant-hosting countries, World Bank estimates.
The new remittances functionality increases competition among technology companies and traditional finance institutions over consumers’ money and data, with providers looking to become a one-stop-shop for their users’ finance needs.