Japan’s Seven Bank In Tie-Up With Philippines BDO Unibank For International Money Transfer

Overseas money transfer between two countries to be made easier thanks to Seven Bank International Money Transfer App.

Mobile banking is growing in influence globally. A recent report from the World Bank suggests it is the cheapest way to transfer money overseas.

Last week, BDO Unibank, owned by retail and banking magnate Henry Sy, became the latest to launch a service.

The Philippines bank is partnering with Japan’s Seven Bank Ltd. The joint venture will see the launch of an app that customers can download. The app will allow them to easily make transfers via their smartphones.

This will be of benefit to the Filipino diaspora in Japan, who are often unable to visit physical money transfer branches on account of their work schedules. Instead, using the app, they will be able to make transfers “anytime, anywhere”, according to a BDO statement.

BDO already has its own remittance service, BDO remit. Within the Philippines, a Cash Pick-Up Anywhere service allows recipients to collect cash from over 1,100 BDO branches, or counters at malls and shopping centres.

BDO established its Japanese presence in May 2016, when the company opened a BDO remit office in Shinjuku. But the new deal with Seven Bank will allow BDO to assist customers beyond Tokyo, and across all of the various prefectures of Japan.

In a statement, BDO said:

“Customers will be able to conveniently and easily remit funds to BDO Unibank accounts 24/7 just by using their mobile phones. The partnership will indeed allow for more time-friendly and less effort means of sending money, leaving no worries for our kababayans in Japan.”

SE Asia a hotbed for disruptive money transfer services

Japan is a leading source of remittances received into the Philippines. In 2016, it is estimated that there were more than 243,000 Filipinos working overseas in Japan.

BDO is the largest bank in the Philippines, whilst Seven Bank, founded in 2001, specialises in ATM services. Its not surprising, therefore, that the bank has made a move into mobile wallets and digital banking in recent times. This is very much in keeping with modern global trends.

In fact, South East Asia is a hotbed for disruptive Fintech solutions. Japanese authorities have recently introduced a sandbox to allow smaller fintech firms to test new products. Within the sandbox, the firms aren’t obliged to comply with regulatory authorities.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the UK has struck up a number of partnerships with its equivalent authorities in SE Asia. The FCA has signed agreements with the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), and the Financial Services Agency in Japan. It has done the same with authorities in Australia, Singapore, South Korea and Japan.