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Owing to its large population and rapidly growing economy, India saw more than US $13 billion in domestic remittances in 2010, a volume that is growing at 15% year over year. With 90% of those remittances channeled through banks, Union Bank of India needed to increase its processing power while freeing staff to concentrate on other banking needs.

Domestic Remittance Load Pressures Bank to Find an Alternative

Supporting domestic remittances was placing such pressure on its branches that Union Bank of India decided to provide an alternative channel that would be capable of providing a 24x7 facility while remaining highly secure, reliable, fast and easy to administer. With this objective in mind, the bank decided to implement a new solution across its extensive ATM network.

Union Bank Creates an ATM Solution to Handle Remittances

The bank knew it could adapt its ATMs to support the solution because they were based on ACI Enterprise Payments Platform, which not only facilitates several types of payments and transfers, but also ensures each and every transaction is as secure and easy to administer as possible. This is essential as domestic remittances are monitored strictly by the Indian regulator, which allows for several national schemes, the most important of which are the National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT) and Inter-bank Mobile Payment (IMPS). The regulator also monitors the Union Bank of India’s own Union eCash mobile-based remittance service.

Union Becomes First Bank to Make Inter-Bank Transfers on ATMs

The project was undertaken as a part of well-defined strategy to empower the bank’s customers through greater use of self-service options. It is the first bank in India to make inter-bank financial transfers available on ATMs, as opposed to branch or internet banking channels, which makes the facility available to a far broader customer base. It also relieved pressure on branch staff, improving productivity and allowing them to spend quality time with customers on sales and service. It has also provided a convenient, self-service and popular solution that enables the bank to improve customer acquisition and retention rates and enhance its bottom line through eventual fee-based income.