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Expanding its mobile money transfer services in Africa, MoneyGram International Inc. (MGI - Analyst Report) introduced its first mobile money remittance service in alliance with South Africa’s leading First National Bank (FNB). This further fortifies the company’s alliance with the bank, which took place last year.

Accordingly, MoneyGram will be able to remit money globally through mobile devices using FNB’s banking mode of payment services, thereby enjoying the bank’s vast and strong network across South Africa. Moreover, FNB’s customers can access any of MoneyGram’s 1,000 money transfer locations across South Africa in order to send or receive money.

South Africa is the third largest hub of the significant remittances with an estimated 1.8 million African migrants who are on the receiving end, while about 0.9 million South Africans living abroad send money to their families in the region, according to the World Bank. Hence, the cyclical money flow is a constant feature.

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. 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.

Such efforts are not only creating demand for the global remittances but are also boosting the company’s brand value. The effects of its consistent growth strategies were also visible in the company’s recently announced fourth-quarter 2012 results. MoneyGram has been gaining traction with the raised momentum in self-service and new channel revenue that jumped 50% in 2012. Further, the company successfully procured about 43,000 agent locations in 2012.

Led by diversified and market-compliant growth strategies, MoneyGram aims to continue achieving double-digit growth in money transfer transactions and increasing free cash flow.

While MoneyGram carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy), 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 #1 (Strong Buy).

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