Business | Technology

New ways of transferring take shape

System cuts out trips to exchange houses and allows people to send money via mobile phones

  • By Samia Badih, Staff Reporter
  • Published: 00:00 November 7, 2010
  • Gulf News

Dubai: In a country highly populated with migrant workers, new ways of money transfer are slowly making their way into the region.

Traditionally, workers receive their salaries via a payroll card. They go to an ATM to withdraw their cash and then queue up at exchange houses to send money back home. This won't necessarily be the case anymore.

The next generation will soon replace the payroll card with the mobile phone, said Moten Hofstad, Regional Director for the Middle East and Africa at Luup, a mobile payments solutions company.

Luup is mobile enabling almost 850,000 payroll cards in the UAE. So workers don't have to go to an ATM or exchange house anymore.

The worker would have pre-registered the detailed information of the beneficiary under a certain name, for example Mama.

Once a worker has been paid, he will receive a message on his mobile phone informing him of the amount of money that has been put onto his virtual account.

He can then send a message that reads: Mama Dh2,000. This means Dh2,000 will be deducted from his account and sent to the person registered under the name Mama. The person on the other end, in this case Mama, will receive an SMS saying that her Dh2,000 is ready for her to collect at the nearest exchange house.

"The money goes just as he [the worker] would have sent the money in front of a teller or exchange house back to the home country," Hofstad said.

The phone allows you to send money when you want it and allows you to ensure that the cash you have is safe, said Aditya Menon, Executive Director and Global Head of Product Management, Obopay, a mobile payment solutions company.

Trend

"So instead of having cash in your wallet, you roll it up into your mobile phone. It's secured with a mobile pin so even if you lose your wallet you don't lose your money.

"It's very useful, especially when at the receiving end, people are using the money to pay their bills, top up their mobile, or buy groceries," he said.

  • 7.1% expected rise inremittance flows to developing countries next year
  • 110 number of money exchange companiesin the UAE

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