THE phenomenal growth of Payoneer Inc.’s local office boosted the New York, US-headquartered firm’s plan to expand in Asia via the Philippines.
Since the launch last year of Payoneer’s Philippine office, the financial technology (fintech) company has experienced a 359-percent growth in monthly payment volume and a 375-percent growth in the number of active monthly users.
Furthermore, Payoneer Philippines’s billing service year-to-date payment volume grew 327 percent than the entire 2016 volume, according to Miguel Warren, Payoneer Regional Head for Southeast Asia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Pakistan.
“It has been a phenomenal year for Payoneer Philippines, and we intend to duplicate or even surpass what we have achieved. Our growth means that the markets we serve are also growing,” Warren said in a news briefing early-October in Makati City. “We want to maintain this upward momentum and continue helping the online outsourcing and export markets in the Philippines.”
He said Payoneer plans to establish presence in other industries beyond their core market of freelancers. Warren said the expansion plan targets business-process outsourcing firms, electronic-commerce sellers and online small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
The firm’s Philippine office has conducted roadshows in key cities, such as Manila, Baguio, Cebu, Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Palawan and Iligan.
Warren said Payoneer Philippines also plans to expand its geographical coverage. As the first office in Southeast Asia, the Philippine operation is set to be Payoneer’s regional hub for Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and members of the Asean.
The firm also plans to launch Australian and Canadian currency-receiving accounts to complement the other currency accounts it provides customers.
Warren said this tack will boost the Filipino freelancers and SMEs, as they can now be paid by their Australian clients “quickly, easily and at very low cost”.
He said that the company will continue to work with traditional financial institutions like banks, which they also consider as competitors.
A paper developed by PriceWaterhouse Cooper pointed out that fintech will be the new business-driver model in 2020.
“We really compete with banks in the traditional space. Payoneer provides the digital alternative to the market,” Warren said. “We see to it that we work with them because it helps us to have an inclusive financial system.”
Warren said Payoneer partners with major banks such as Bank of America and Deutsche Bank.
Nonetheless, he acknowledges the new role being played by fintech firms in the financial sector.