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MoneyGram (MGI) Renews Tie-Up to Boost Middle East Presence

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MoneyGram International, Inc. (MGI - Free Report) recently extended its long-standing relationship with Ooredoo Qatar, a well-established telecommunications operator in Qatar, in a bid to enable MoneyGram’s customers to continue using Ooredoo Money Wallet for conducting digital money transfers globally. Notably, the renewal has been extended for another five years.

Being a virtual account linked with the mobile number, Ooredoo Money Wallet allows customers to not only send money worldwide but also enables hassle-free deposit and extraction of funds.

It is worth mentioning that the relationship between MoneyGram and Ooredoo Qatar can be traced back to the year 2012, wherein the latter became the former’s first ever fully digital partner.

Moreover, the latest move is in sync with MoneyGram’s efforts to strengthen its digital footprint across the Middle Eastern market. While cash payments were predominantly used across the region and digital transformation efforts were underway, it was the COVID-19 pandemic that accelerated the demand for contactless payments. This, in turn, highlighted the immense potential present in the Middle East digital payments market. It is worth mentioning that people these days tend to prefer online shopping from the comfort of one’s home and avoid physical visit to stores in a bid to curb the virus spread. This trend has fueled penetration of several digital platforms into the region further.

Also, higher smartphone usage by the tech-savvy population and increased Internet penetration in the Middle East region have positioned its digital payments market well for long-term growth. Case in point, per Internet World Stats, the Middle East region boasts of having the fourth-highest Internet penetration rate worldwide of 70.8% in 2020. Having said that, the latest move of MoneyGram seems to be a time-opportune one considering the inclination of people in the Middle East region toward usage of mobile apps.

Shares of MoneyGram have soared 218.8% in a year against the industry’s decline of 2%.

Time and again, MoneyGram has renewed its successful relationships with leading brands in a bid to continue delivering money transfer services across worldwide. The renewals also reinforce the trust that partners have on MoneyGram, courtesy of its robust API-driven platform and enhanced customer-centric capabilities. Notably, the company’s online platform has witnessed the 13th consecutive month of triple-digit cross-border transaction growth in the direct-to-consumer digital business in January, which remains commendable. Examples of certain renewals include the five-year one with Canada Post in December 2020 for bolstering its foothold across the Canadian market. Another renewal was undertaken with the world's largest retailer, Walmart, through a three-year extension during last year in October.

Some other companies active in the digital payments space include The Western Union Company (WU - Free Report) , PayPal Holdings Inc. (PYPL - Free Report) and Square, Inc. (SQ - Free Report) .

MoneyGram has a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell).

You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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