MasterCard and Western Union have teamed up to simplify cross-border trade for small and midsize businesses. Customers of the organizations’ new international payments service will have access to a dedicated foreign-payments portal on the MasterCard Business Network. Through this portal, they will be able to send payments in more than 135 currencies directly from their bank account to a foreign recipient’s account. Western Union Business Solutions will provide the foreign exchange (FX) functionality underlying the transactions. The customer portals will offer real-time quotes and transparent FX pricing, according to MasterCard and Western Union.
“Over 95 percent of American importers in 2011 were small and medium-sized enterprises, which demonstrates how significant they are to the American economy,” says Raj Agrawal, president of Western Union Business Solutions. “Working with global partners and managing international cash flow is clearly an important part of their operations. [Western Union is] working with MasterCard to help SMEs be as competitive as possible in the global marketplace, whether they trade with near neighbors such as Canada or countries as far away as Kenya, Indonesia, and Brazil.”