Vio Digital (Vio), a South African FinTech startup, has just announced availability of its blockchain based money money transfer app. The startup reports that the app will allow for "person to person" international money transfer.
What makes their announcement more interesting, apart from it being a blockchain based solution, is that with the Vio money transfer app, there are no money transfer and exchange fees as well as no foreign exchange markup fees.
"For people sending money home to their families, additional processing and admin costs can be crippling. Our app uses technology to give people safer and more convenient ways to move their money. Technology like the blockchain means we can take cost out of the system to give people cheaper ways to move their money," said Praga Govender, CEO, and Founder at Vio Digital.
Many big financial services and mobile services providers, as well as FinTech startups, talk about "financial inclusion" when launching their mobile or online payments or related solutions. Despite all these new payments solutions, especially the money transfer services, they remain among expensive with up to 20% being charged on a single transaction. These money transfer fees are even more sharply felt by low-income earners who previously mostly transacted by cash but now have to also budget for transaction fees. This is what makes Vio's model rather interesting given they charge no fees.
"Vio leverages the Blockchain, in combination with Visa Direct APIs, to create an innovative digital P2P transfer platform. Vio users can send and receive funds - domestically & internationally - either to another user's profile or wallet address. Users can exchange Vio tokens to local currency, which is then delivered to their Visa debit card account. No transfer fees. No foreign exchange markup."
How it works is that users will use the app to purchase Vio tokens, which are transferable through the app. To ensure exchange of funds when users want to cash out to local currencies, vio has partnered with and been certified by Visa.
The Vio app is currently available for download on the Google Play Store and will go live during May 2018 with initial launches planned fot Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, and Cameroon.