Startup Taps Gift Cards for Fee-Free Remittances (May 6, 2014)
San Diego-headquartered Quippi is taking the fees out of remittances by offering gift cards that can be purchased online or in-store in the U.S. and redeemed by recipients in Mexico. Launched late last year, Quippi is building out its platform rapidly, this week launching its online International Gift Card Center and signing new partnerships with a quartet of major Mexican retailers.
The cost of sending money from the U.S. to Mexico can be significant. Remittance fees to Latin America averaged more than 7 percent of the money transfer value in 2013, according to a recent Pew Research report. Quippi’s platform eliminates those fees by enabling gift card transactions to be initiated in the U.S. and received securely in Mexico. Gift cards equipped with PINs can be purchased at more than 5,000 retail locations in the U.S., including 7-Eleven, ACE Cash Express and Family Dollar Stores, as well as online at the just-launched International Gift Card Center. The PIN can then be transferred to a recipient in Mexico, where it can be redeemed at more than 3,400 merchants, including new partners Office Depot Mexico, Farmacias Benavides, Farma Todo and Opticas Devlyn.
Beyond the benefits for remittance senders and recipients, Quippi’s platform enables merchants to expand their brand’s presence in the U.S. and drive traffic to their stores in Mexico, according to the company.
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