• Dec. 9, 2016, 7:36 am

Thomas Cook/ItzCash partnership to aid India’s unbanked

A new partnership between Thomas Cook (India) and ItzCash, India’s first multipurpose prepaid card, is targeted at India’s growing unbanked inward remittance market.

The deal will see remittance services such as Xpress Money and MoneyGram offered at more than 75,000 locations in India.

According to the World Bank, India — at more than $71 billion — is the largest receiver of remittances in the world. That total has more than tripled of the past decade, and is partially due to the fact the Indian diaspora of 25 million is the world’s second largest.

A problem exists because 40 percent of the Indian population does not have access to financial services. That is why Thomas Cook is partnering with ItzCash, a Thomas Cook representative said.

Mahesh Iyer

Mahesh Iyer

“Inward remittances form about 22-23 percent of India’s foreign exchange income and having more than tripled over the last decade, is a powerful growth market,” Mahesh Iyer, chief operating officer — foreign exchange and head — visas, explained.

“Cook India’s alliance with ItzCash, is hence a strategic move to leverage the powerful potential of this unbanked inward remittance market- especially in Middle India and rural and semirural catchment areas; and thereby offer our customers hassle free convenience and access and speedy inward remittance transactions.”

ItzCash is the first company to be authorized by the Reserve Bank of India under the Payment and Settlement area.

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