E-Gifting company GiftMe, in joining forces with international mobile top-up platform Ding, said it is looking to tap into the diaspora market as both entities partner to fulfil the need for 'purposeful remittance' through instant gift cards.
"With this partnership we are giving Ding this massive reach to offer its service to the local market. We will supply them with the gift cards which they will share with an even much larger diaspora audience, giving us immediate access to more than 100,000 users worldwide," chief operating officer Rashidi Thomas told the Jamaica Observer.
"This partnership will directly impact our growth plans as the diaspora is a very lucrative market and one that everybody wants a share of, including our business. Based on the unique nature of the service we are offering, we believe the demand will be strong and we hope to significantly grow revenues from this latest addition. With the partnership still fairly new at about three months old, our projection is to have about 30-40 per cent of our revenues coming from the diaspora market," Thomas further said, pointing to results from a Ding survey which found overwhelming demand for the service after more than 80 per cent of the Jamaican Diaspora welcomed the collaboration, lauding its ability to assist them with supporting loved ones back home with essential goods and services.
"Sales have so far been good and we have, since the partnership, seen upticks in our own gift cards from that channel," he added.
Ding, which is better known for its mobile recharge services, has, since the addition of its instant gift card service, gained access to over 30 markets globally. Under its mobile top-up business, the company's platform is already linked to about 150 countries across some 500 operators worldwide.
Through what many dub as 'purposeful remittance', both companies with the digital gifting service wants to help senders to intentionally determine how funds sent to loved ones are spent. This means that funds which would normally be sent in a lump sum through more traditional remittance channels can now be fragmented to allow for the deliberate payment of various services, including utilities, food, and medicine, among other needs.
"What this does is to ensure from the sender side that the money is used for what it was sent to do as the gift card can only be redeemed at the specified merchant. From the supply side, we are onboarding as many merchants as possible so that Ding can have a large pool of entities from which to sell gift cards to the diaspora," Thomas said.
"Leveraging Ding's market-leading position in top-up and GiftMe's vast merchant distribution network islandwide, this partnership is set to revolutionise remittance methods for the Jamaican Diaspora, whilst giving our local merchants direct access to the lucrative diaspora market," he stated.
GiftMe, which has been paving the way for digital giving, has, in the last two years, connected more than 250 merchants to its platform, selling over 130,000 gift cards locally. The company in pushing forward with its future plans for expansion, said it wants to, in upcoming phases, also double down on the regional market.
"We plan to move into other countries, including ones in the Caribbean, such as Trinidad, particularly because of its size and it being the second-largest English-speaking territory. I don't foresee this happening this year but hopefully sometime in the near future.
"As it relates to some other upcoming plans, we have the release of our new mobile app coming soon, which will allow our customers to enjoy a much better experience, more discounts among a host of other things. We hope to have this ready by October," Thomas said to the Caribbean Business Report.