SendFriend is launching today in New Jersey. The next-generation remittance company provides a cheap way for overseas Filipino workers to send money to the Philippines, securely transferring dollars to the Philippine peso at the lowest rate available.
Last year millions of migrant works in the US transferred about $650 billion in remittances and spent more than $45 billion in fees using traditional services to send money back home to friends and family with transactions settling in three to five days. People in the US send over $11 billion in remittances each year to the Philippines.
SendFriend has confirmed it’s currently using Ripple’s cross-border payment technology and says it plans to utilize xRapid, an XRP-based solution, to move money. XRP, the world’s third-largest cryptocurrency, is used as a liquidity vehicle for cross-border payments, enabling SendFriend to circumvent the corresponding banking system and convert USD to XRP to PHP in seconds instead of days.
SendFriend says its fees are 65% lower than the industry average as it eliminates the high fees of the banking system and replaces a more complex and costly legacy operation with an ultra low-cost experience for sending money globally.
We’re all excited for our launch, and today is the Day (for New Jersey)! Join thousands of Filipinos and come out to the Philippine American Friendship Committee Parade and check out our booth – We will be here all day! pic.twitter.com/PkcrGChwZ9
— SendFriend (@sendfriendinc) June 23, 2019
SendFriend aims to empower the millions of overseas Filipino workers who overpay for international money transfers. Its engineering team has roots at The World Bank, MIT, Ripple partner MoneyGram and Harvard Business School, and its investors include the MIT Media Lab, Barclays, the Mastercard Foundation, Techstars and Mahindra Finance.
It’s trivia time! On average, how much money is sent from Filipino Americans to their family overseas each year?
— SendFriend (@sendfriendinc) June 20, 2019
A Yale Global Justice Fellow, CEO David Lighton founded the company while at MIT where he was awarded the MIT Legatum Fellowship and was named the winner of the MIT Translational Innovation Award. In the wake of the devastating earthquake that struck Haiti in 2010, Lighton, who was an analyst at the World Bank, says he watched financial aid that was sent to the country by family members get stripped by as much as 7%.