Small World FS on Ingenico partnership and the future of transfers

The payment and financial industries are no strangers to digital transformation, nor to the effects that an influx of technologies are having on how consumers receive, spend and transfer money.

We spoke to Carlos McIlwain, Group Online Marketing Manager, Small World FS, about the state of the money transfer industry, what trends are affecting its future, and why, for the company, partnering with Ingenico is expected to play a key role in making this offering available to more consumers around the world.

While money transfer isn’t a new phenomenon, it has certainly undergone significant change. Why do you think this is the case?

As we move forward, two things have become more important – security and the reduction of friction. New technology is allowing us to do things more easily, reduce manual work and create a faster and frictionless experience. But on the other hand, we have security as a counterpart. Over the years, fraudsters and scammers have become more knowledgeable. They can work the system to obtain their goals, so consumers must now take on additional security measures, which act as a counterpart to the frictionless experience.

Today, we’re seeing mobile apps help to reduce friction as the world moves towards a safer environment. Smartphones now allow for security authorizations that standard computers do not. For example, biometrics, such as fingerprint readers and facial recognition software, are moving the industry forward and allowing consumers to have the best of both worlds – security and a frictionless experience, right from the palm of your hand.

Think about it this way – if technology is making bank transfers safer, while also adding a layer of security that further simplifies the process, why not leverage it for the benefit of consumers and to improve the overall customer experience?

Besides this, what other customer or industry trends are you seeing that might help explain this renewed vigour?

We’d be lying if we said that other industries and changes in consumer habits weren’t a large part of the equation. The world is becoming increasingly global, and with technology, increasingly connected. This is opening up many new opportunities for consumers.

To give you an example, we have students using our services that are studying abroad who are receiving a regular income from their parents to pay for studies and housing. This money would be transferred as a bank transfer in the destination country. At the same time, we have backpackers traveling through continents like South America who are picking up money as they travel between countries, which helps limit the amount of money they have with them at one time. This is beneficial from both a security and experience standpoint.

The trend we’re seeing in general is that as industries and consumers change, the world must adapt. Because of this, we will keep identifying new types of customers with different needs – and we must make sure that our offering is the best and most versatile it can be.

Small World recently announced a partnership with Ingenico to help expand its money transfer offerings and reach customers in new markets. Why did you choose Ingenico, and how has the partnership benefited Small World thus far?

We chose to partner with Ingenico because consumers want seamless and convenient experiences, and with so many ways to pay, the power really lies with those consumers. Just as we’ve seen in traditional commerce, consumers have preferred ways to send and receive money, whether on their smartphones, laptops, via a mobile app or through direct deposit. We also know that these preferences are subject to change based on the amount or type of transaction taking place – so having multiple options was vital for us. Partnering with Ingenico, which has a strong history in both localized and cross-border commerce, gave us the support we needed to provide the most convenient and frictionless experience possible. In addition, any time we can reduce overall processing costs results in a win for our customers.

Any last words on the industry, at a glance?

For me, it’s simple. If companies are capable of providing useful services that meet the needs of the customer and not their own interests, they will be well-positioned to succeed. The customer experience and the evolving needs of consumers must be central to strategic business operations.

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