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In an effort to expand its money transfer business, MoneyGram International Inc. (MGI - Analyst Report) announced a strategic alliance with China’s leading Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank (SRCB). As per the agreement, MoneyGram will be offering its services to over 23 million people in Shanghai through 340 branches of the bank.

Accordingly, both the parties have agreed to gain scale by providing money transfer services in 20 places where SRCB branches are located. Furthermore, this alliance will allow MoneyGram to offer services to over 100 financial convenience stores of SRCB, to be revealed in the near future.

The plan to penetrate the high-consumption Chinese market complements MoneyGram’s strategy to boost its money transfer volumes by global network expansion. On the other hand, this service will grant the working rural population the access and convenience of money transfer. According to the World Bank, China generates over $60 billon in money remittances across 150 countries globally, thereby holding the second largest position.

MoneyGram continues to bolster its position as one of the leading money transfer companies in the world by constantly expanding its payment network via alliances. Adding to its agent network in this month itself, the company joined forces with Chile’s postal system  – CorreosChile and Malaysia’s rapidly growing remittance company TML.

MoneyGram also announced strategic deals with online foreign exchange specialist OzForex to offer its money transfer services across Australia and New Zealand, thereby attempting to capture the $500 billion global remittance market, which is expected to amplify, given the increasing number of immigrants in these countries.

Simultaneously, MoneyGram is also enhancing its brand awareness by developing user-friendly payment solutions that suit the new market trends. In this regard, the company offers various self-service products such as mobile, kiosk and online money transfer payment processes.

Last week, MoneyGram also collaborated with Europe’s leading mobile telecoms operator – Lebara Mobile, to offer online money transfer services through mobile devices. Such efforts are not only creating demand for  global remittances but also boost the company’s brand value and scope for financial growth.

While MoneyGram carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell), other outperformers in the financial sector include Moody’s Corp. (MCO - Analyst Report), Euronet Worldwide Inc. (EEFT - Snapshot Report) and Columbia Banking System Inc. (COLB - Snapshot Report). All of these carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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