Digital wallets

Western Union Transformation: From Traditional Wire Transfers to Digital Wallets in Latin America

Western Union has announced that its digital wallet is coming to Latin America. And the company has its sights set on the largest economy: Brazil.

With a presence in over 200 countries and over 170 years of business experience, Western Union has managed to stay relevant by modernizing its operations.

Now, following global digital financial trends, the company is investing in growing its digital wallet in Latin America after successfully introducing its digital banking offering in Europe in February 2022.

“We are changing the way we interact with our customers today, moving from a transactional activity to a customer-centric and relationship-based approach,” said Thomas Mazzaferro, chief innovation and data officer at Western. Union. “Offering our Brazilian customers an integrated digital banking and money transfer solution will be a key step in this effort,” Mazzaferro added.

Credit: Facebook, AppWU, Brazil

To get started, Western Union acquired Te Enviei, a Brazilian digital wallet already available in 98% of cities across the country. The new partnership will streamline and accelerate the rollout of Western Union’s financial ecosystem offerings in the country, according to the company.

“Brazil is a strategically important market where we already hold a banking license, and it is a highly digitized banking market. Additionally, our internal research indicates that many Brazilians are looking for financial products that can meet their needs in a global economy,” said Ricardo Amaral, President of Western Union Brazil.

With a population of 212.7 million, more than half of whom already use a digital wallet, Brazil is positioning itself as a critical region for the market. Knowledge Sourcing Intelligence explains that the country is the only one in the area where Samsung Pay, Google Pay and Apple Pay all have a presence.

To stay competitive, Western Union is adapting quickly and embracing rapid innovations that allow people to move money across borders almost instantly, with ease and security. Worldpay’s Global Payments Report reveals that by 2023, more than half of global e-commerce transactions will be paid for with a digital wallet.

Western Union’s digital wallet will allow Brazilian customers to store funds, send money internationally and domestically, and pay bills, all from the comfort of their phone. The company is expected to reveal more details about its new digital financial services at the upcoming Investor Day on October 20.