London-based p2p marketplace Cashaa has announced that the company is preparing to launch its services in India and Nigeria next week. The launch is formally scheduled for January 18, and will see the company bring its unique zero-fee cash transfer services to cash senders and recipients in those two important countries. According to information provided by Cashaa, the service’s testing period resulted in more than 10,000 trader sign-ups, and transfers of some $2 million made using the company’s blockchain-powered platform.
Unlike many other blockchain-based remittance services in recent years, Cashaa’s business model provides a peer-to-peer marketplace designed to facilitate the transfer of fiat currencies from sender to recipient in a straightforward manner – and without the fees that many people are now accustomed to paying. While there is a cryptocurrency aspect to the transaction, that happens in the background. As a result, the Cashaa remittance service should offer customers in these nations an opportunity to avoid the challenges they might otherwise confront when dealing with traditional cryptocurrency exchanges.
As Cashaa founder and CEO Kumar Gaurav noted last year,
“The reality is that when conducting country-to-country bitcoin remittances, you have to go through exchanges twice. For example, if you want to conduct remittances from the U.S. to Ghana, you have to first change your fiat currency into bitcoin on a U.S. exchange, then send the bitcoin and then use a local exchange in Ghana to convert the bitcoins into Cedi. For the latter, however, liquidity is a big issue … as there is currently not near enough local demand for bitcoin. Hence, this type of business model has struggled and failed in the past.”
To resolve those challenges, Cashaa is creating partnerships with local digital currency traders and exchanges, as well as Bitcoin ATMs. The company has also taken a cryptocurrency-neutral approach that should eventually enable it to function using any digital currency traders prefer. The end result is a cash remittance service powered by cryptocurrency trading activity - and a new zero-fee money transfer option for consumers in Nigeria and India.