Kenyans living in the US stand to gain from a new banking product that allows users to earn interest and pay reduced fees on international remittances.
The new product dubbed Sendwave Pay was recently launched by digital remittance company Sendwave. The new solution provides existing Sendwave users access to an FDIC-insured bank account with an accompanying debit card. This makes Sendwave the only major remittance provider with such an offering in the US.
Sendwave Pay, which is available to users via the Sendwave app on iOS and Android, has the following features:
A bank account with no hidden account creation, maintenance, or minimum balance fees
Access to up to 0.4% improvement in exchange rates and up to 25% savings on transaction fees on remittances to Kenya, Ghana, Tanzania, Uganda, Nigeria, and Liberia when using the funds in their accounts.
A Sendwave Pay debit card to use on everyday transactions;
Reimbursements for international transaction fees when using their Sendwave Pay debit card outside of the US;
Earn up to 0.51% APY on the money held in their Sendwave Pay account
For migrants, opening a bank account is considered an important step to establishing themselves and helps to achieve financial autonomy. Sendwave Pay is the first neobank offering within Zepz, the Group powering global remittance brands Sendwave and WorldRemit. Zepz intends to continually invest in migrant-focused financial offerings around the world, including Kenya.
Eric Huynh, Product Lead, Sendwave Pay, Zepz said: “The way that people use and access money has drastically changed over the last decade. We created Sendwave Pay to better meet the needs of our customers, who are dynamically considering how they manage their money both for themselves and for loved ones abroad.”
Zepz’s launch of Sendwave Pay comes amid an economic slowdown and higher borrowing costs in the US, which is the leading source of remittances to Kenya. Kenyans living in the US sent a total of $2.33 billion back home in 2022, representing more than half of the total $4.02 billion of diaspora remittances in 2022, according to data from the Central Bank of Kenya. (CBK).