Pomelo and Thunes to Introduce Credit-Based Remittances from US to Philippines

Pomelo and Thunes to Introduce Credit-Based Remittances from US to Philippines

by May 13, 2024

Global payment solutions provider Thunes has entered into a partnership with Pomelo, an innovator in credit-powered remittance and credit card issuance. This collaboration introduces a new international money transfer system from the United States to the Philippines, which aims to relook at the process of remittances.

The partnership utilises Thunes’ digital wallet integration, which lowers the costs of transfers but also creates new familial connections across borders. Diverging from conventional remittance methods, which typically involve banks or money transfer operators, Pomelo’s model uniquely provides each customer with a credit line.

This facility is designed to finance their remittances while concurrently aiding in establishing their credit history in the US. The system also ensures that users’ families have ongoing access to a credit line, which they can use as needed while the primary user manages monthly repayments.

The service enables Pomelo cardholders to swiftly transfer funds from their credit lines directly into the recipients’ GCash digital wallets through Thunes’ global network. According to a 2023 GlobalData report, a significant majority of Filipinos —88%— have utilised digital wallets in the previous year, with the GCash brand alone being used by 89%.

The initiative extends beyond direct transfers to digital wallets like Gcash. It allows a Pomelo cardholder to support up to three family members or friends globally, offering not only competitive exchange rates but also doing away with the transfer fees which can typically average 6% as charged by traditional money transfer services, as per the World Bank.

Thunes and Pomelo plan to broaden the reach of this remittance solution from the US-Philippines corridor to include other key international markets such as Mexico and India.

Floris de Kort

Floris de Kort

Floris de Kort, CEO of Thunes, remarked on the partnership:

“This collaboration aligns perfectly with Thunes’ ambition to make cross-border payments faster, more transparent, and more affordable, by connecting to over 3 billion digital wallets and 4 billion bank accounts. By providing payouts to the GCash digital wallet, we’re enabling instant access to funds for family members when they need it most.”

 

Eric Velasquez Frenkiel

Eric Velasquez Frenkiel

Eric Velasquez Frenkiel, Founder and CEO of Pomelo, added:

“Historically, sending remittances has been costly, slow, and unreliable. At Pomelo, we are transforming how international money transfer operates by assisting customers in building a credit history in the US while supporting their loved ones across borders. Thunes’ expertise in emerging markets will be crucial in rapidly deploying our digital wallet integration, initially in the Philippines/US corridor and subsequently as we expand our services.”

Since launching in August 2022, Pomelo has made considerable progress, securing US$35 million in a Series A funding round in April 2024, led by Dubai Venture firm Vy Capital, alongside Founders Fund and A* Capital. Additionally, the company also announced a US$75 million expansion of its warehouse facility, highlighting its rapid growth in the local remittance sector.