The company is connecting its crypto product — which is not redeemable by consumers for cash — to a network of pre-approved merchants in Nigeria, Kenya, and Rwanda. SureRemit plans to launch in India and the Middle East in the second quarter of 2018.
Clients can use SureRemit’s app to present tokens as payment for things such as utility bills, student tuition, and online consumer goods. African e-commerce giant
There’ll be no purchase or transfer fees for the tokens above face value. SureRemit will generate revenue from businesses, who pay a percentage on each token transaction, and then redeem the tokens (less fees) for cash from SureRemit.
SureRemit’s merchant network — according to co-founder Samuel-Biyi — views the fees as the cost of accessing a new pool of customers. “We’re a big channel to connecting them to the multi-billion dollar market of remittance inflows,” he said “So our model is transferring costs of remittances to the merchant side away from the sender side.”
Remittances — and the
On global remittance fees, Sub-Saharan Africa pays the
One of SureRemit’s backers,
On the regulatory side, SureRemit’s Samuel-Biyi sees less risk of their crypto token product being used for money-laundering compared to other block-chain payments systems, such as Bitcoin. “Because it’s not cash redeemable and tied to particular merchants…one would not be able to transform tokens to cash that easily. This makes it an unattractive money laundering channel,” he said.
To the question of why consumers would use SureRemit’s crypto tokens versus other blockchain finance products, Biyi named “speed and cost” as competitive advantages. “Remit tokens ensure zero-cost, high-velocity cross-border transactions, which Bitcoin is not currently optimized for,” he said.
SureRemit has already proven market demand for cashless consumer payment and merchant programs through its predecessor,