Western Union Money Transfers Now Live from Sri Lanka to the World via MMBL Money Master

Regional News By Karen Santos February 21, 2019

International Workers or Expatriates in Sri Lanka Can Now Send Western Union International Transfers via MMBL Money Master Branches

COLOMBO, SRI LANKA, FEBRUARY 21, 2019— Western Union, a leader in cross-border, cross-currency money movement, and MMBL Money Master, Sri Lanka’s pioneering money transfer service and leading Western Union® Agent in the country, today announced the launch of international money transfers from Sri Lanka to the world, for international citizens working in Sri Lanka.

The launch represents a significant milestone as it marks the first time Western Union outbound international money transfers has become available to international workers or expatriates in Sri Lanka via 61 MMBL Money Master locations across 35 cities and 17 districts, including Ampara, Batticaloa, Colombo, Gampaha, Jaffna, Kandy and Kegalle. Services are to be progressively extended island-wide.

Customers may send up to USD $500 to a bank account, or for cash pickup in minutes[i] at more than half a million walk-in Agent locations in 200 countries and territories.

“We are very pleased to announce the launch of the outbound international transfer services from Sri Lanka to the rest of the world, for this international group of customers. As Sri Lanka advances its position in the global economy, as an international hub, the country’s ability to facilitate international money movement and payments with regulated and convenient access along with speed, becomes instrumental to supporting economic growth, social development and financial inclusion,” said Sohini Rajola, Regional Vice President, South Asia and Indo-China.

“At Western Union, we are passionate about the role we play in the lives of our customers, and we relentlessly focus on their evolving needs, whether that is a Sri Lankan citizen working across the globe or an international citizen in Sri Lanka. While our customers care about moving money from one country to another, we care about making sure we can serve customers in nearly every country in the world and connect their money for them”, she said.

Full activation of more than 2,000 MMBL Money Master locations will provide international citizens living and working in Sri Lanka island-wide access to send money abroad to fund a host of expenses from sending money back to their home countries or provide funds to loved ones for international education, medical services, travel, and goods and services.

“Our goal is to deliver better customer experience and fuel future growth and innovation in the country. With Western Union, we are pleased to come together, and enrich customers lives with increased access to money transfer services – both inbound and outbound – and improve customer satisfaction,” said J M S Brito, Deputy Chairman and Managing Director, Aitken Spence; Chairman, MMBL Money Transfer.

Western Union has been enabling consumers in Sri Lanka to receive money transfers since 1995. Western Union moved money into Sri Lanka from more than 170 countries last year. International residents using the new outbound service will enjoy zero transfer fee[ii] during this introductory phase.

As Sri Lanka strengthens its strategic position as the hub of the Indian Ocean, it is making strong progress at the global and domestic level, securing opportunities for local businesses in global production networks and bringing opportunities to rural communities by building infrastructure connecting rural and urban areas and linking Sri Lanka’s economic hubs. Active public-private partnerships with international companies and their workers is enabling rapid socio-economic growth. The Western Union service offered by MMBL Money Master provides a formal sector, reliable channel for these foreign workers to send their earnings back to their families.


[i] Funds may be delayed or services unavailable based on certain transaction conditions, including amount sent, destination country, currency availability, regulatory and foreign exchange issues, required receiver action(s), identification requirements, Agent location hours, differences in time zones, or selection of delayed options. Additional restrictions may apply. See terms for details

[ii] Western Union also makes money from currency exchange. When choosing a money transmitter, carefully compare both transfer fees and exchange rates.  Fees and foreign exchange rates may vary by brand, channel, and location based on several factors. Fees and rates subject to change without notice. Subject to applicable taxes (if any)

# # #

About Western Union

The Western Union Company (NYSE: WU) is a global leader in cross-border, cross-currency money movement. Our omnichannel platform connects the digital and physical worlds and makes it possible for consumers and businesses to send and receive money and make payments with speed, ease, and reliability. As of September 30, 2018, our network included over 550,000 retail agent locations offering Western Union, Vigo or Orlandi Valuta branded services in more than 200 countries and territories, with the capability to send money to billions of accounts. Additionally, westernunion.com, our fastest growing channel in 2017, is available in more than 50 countries and territories to move money around the world. In 2017, we moved over $300 billion in principal in nearly 130 currencies and processed 32 transactions every second across all our services. With our global reach, Western Union moves money for better, connecting family, friends and businesses to enable financial inclusion and support economic growth. For more information, visit www.westernunion.com.

About Western Union’s Cross-Border Platform

Western Union’s cross-border, cross-currency money movement platform – including a robust digital footprint, settlement, treasury and compliance infrastructure, a vast global retail network of over half a million locations, and the ability to send money to billions of accounts and mobile wallets – sets the standard for international money movement. With operations in more than 200 countries and territories, Western Union’s platform processed an average of 34 transactions every second and moved $300 billion in principal across 130 currencies in 2018.

Connecting the digital and physical worlds of money, Western Union’s technology stack, APIs, foreign exchange and settlement engine, agent network, anti-money laundering and fraud detection capabilities make it one of the largest digital and physical money movers for consumers around the globe. The company offers digital transactions in more than 60 countries and territories. Approximately 70% of Western Union’s digital transactions globally now originate on mobile devices.

About MMBL Money Transfer

MMBL Money Transfer (Pvt) Limited a joint venture of Aitken Spence PLC and Mercantile Merchant Bank Ltd. Has been an agent of Western Union providing inward remittance services since 1995. With over 2000 agent locations, MMBL is the largest agent for Western Union in Sri Lanka both in terms of network and volumes. Amongst our partners are banks, Co-op rural banks, finance companies, agency post offices and money changers. There are also over 350 retailers which is unique to the MMBL network. MMBL strategy is to provide easy access to every Western Union customer to collect his / her remittance ‘right next door’.