Global cross-border payments company, WorldRemit has announced that it will acquire US-based and Africa-focused remittance app, Sendwave.
According to its press release, the deal which will be in cash and stock is expected to be finalised in the fourth quarter of 2020. Although the amount wasn’t stated, Bloomberg pegged it at more than $500 million.
Sendwave was founded in 2014 by Drew Durbin and Lincoln Quirk when the former found it difficult to send money for an NGO he was running in Tanzania. The startup’s first focus was Kenya before subsequently serving customers who wanted to send money to Nigeria, Ghana, and Senegal.
Following the close of the deal, Sendwave will continue to operate independently. Similarly, it will retain its brand, management, employees, mobile applications and key partners.
We’re delighted to be joining forces with @sendwaveapp, an app to mobile money transfer company, so that we can help more customers send money globally. https://t.co/VBIs8u1NSa pic.twitter.com/8B7qQKmy6P
— WorldRemit (@WorldRemit) August 26, 2020
Given the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic on global remittances, this acquisition couldn’t be more timely. Although people are now embracing digital banking more than ever, the World Bank says they are sending less money overseas. Predicting a 20% decline in global remittances to $445 billion this year, the organisation is bullish that it will rise to $470 billion next year.
To drive home this point, Breon Corcoran, CEO of WorldRemit said of the partnership and acquisition.
“WorldRemit has one of the broadest and most accessible networks for money transfers globally. Combining it with Sendwave, which offers instant, no/low-fee and fully digital payments from North America and Europe to Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal and East Africa, addresses customer needs for fast and secure digital payments – especially given today’s travel restrictions and economic turmoil.”
The ten-year-old company serves more than 4 million customers across 150 countries. And in the past fiscal year, ending June 2020, $7.5b in transfers has been sent across its platform and Sendwave’s, bringing in approximately $280m in revenue.
NEW EPISODE OUT! Built in Africa, a podcast by Techpoint Africa
NEW REPORT: Nigerian startups raised $28.35m in Q2 2020; only about 4.5% of that came from local investors. Find out more in the full report.