Western Union strengthens its Philippines and global distribution network

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Consumer demand expected to drive Agent location growth to 450,000 by end of 2010

March 24, 2010, Philippines – The Western Union Company, a global leader in money transfer services, expects to further expand its global distribution network from 410,000[1] currently to over 450,000 Agent locations by the end of 2010.

“The expansion plan is in line with Western Union’s commitment to being wherever our consumers need us to be, not just here in the Philippines, but in the countries where our consumers’ fathers and mothers, sons and daughters are working hard for a better life,” said Patricia Riingen, senior vice president, Pacific & Indochina, Western Union.

Western Union’s Agent distribution network reaches Filipinos in over 200 countries and territories throughout the world, not only in the cities, but in the countryside and in underserved areas.

“I am proud that our strong network enables us to provide a fast, reliable and convenient financial link between millions of Filipinos away from home and their families. With Western Union, OFWs working in cities such as London or Sydney are able to send money back home to the Philippines. In addition, mothers or fathers working in Manila are also able to send money to their families who may live in very remote areas in the country like Bongao in Tawi-Tawi, which is just one of Western Union’s 7,7001 Agent locations in the Philippines.”

Western Union’s over 7,700 agent location footprints mean Western Union® Money TransferSM is available at all the 128 cities and almost all municipalities and provinces in the Philippines. Most of the Western Union® Agent locations are open seven days a week and during non-business hours. Some of them even offers 24/7 service which provides Western Union consumers unmatched convenience of choosing locations that suit their schedule.

“Last year, we further strengthened our already very strong distribution network by adding another 500 Agent locations. We are there in nearly every place that our consumers wish to send money, whether that is from overseas or within the Philippines. Moving ahead, we’ll continue our promise to consumers: Kampante ka sa Western Union,” Patricia continued.

In 2009, Western Union moved 18% of the world’s cash remittances – more than US$65 billion in consumer-to-consumer transactions.

Western Union also implements service enhancement strategies that are about ensuring a better experience for its consumers. Specifically in the Philippines, all Western Union Agent locations nationwide are equipped to offer consumers the choice of peso or US dollar payout for international money transfers, a service offered since 2001. In addition, consumers can also access formless transactions to further reduce transaction time. Flagship stores are located in urban areas with high consumer traffic, which means more counters and frontline associates facilitating quicker transaction time and more spacious and comfortable surrounds.

Western Union and its Agents’ efforts in bringing superior money transfer service to consumers was recognized by The Asian Banker recently. For the second year in a row, Western Union has won The Asian Banker’s coveted “Excellence in Remittance Business” award across Asia Pacific. Western Union’s market leadership in the remittance business in a difficult year reinforced by higher growth and profitability, innovative network and channel expansion differentiated it from a strong list of nominees according to The Asian Banker.

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