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    Binangonan Rural Bank rolls out e-money app

    Cloud computing company Alibaba Cloud and local partner Unicloud Technology will host E-pon, the e-money digital app of Binangonan Rural Bank (BRB).

    BRB, the first rural bank in the Philippines to launch electronic money issuer operations, also tapped Alibaba Group to digitalize its identity verification process and mobile payment operations. 

    “E-money makes it possible for more people to engage in financial transactions online, especially in the new normal. By leveraging Alibaba Cloud’s IT infrastructure and innovative fintech products, we will be able to provide more unbanked and underserved Filipinos with convenient access to financial services,” said Alfonso Huang, president of E-pon from BRB, in a statement.  

    E-pon can handle daily banking needs — like deposits and withdrawals — and act as a mobile payment gateway for merchants, Mr. Huang said in an e-mail. It will also provide access to loans and investments, and payment tie-ups with government entities. 

    Designed by the BRB, the app has an e-wallet; a platform for small and medium enterprises to showcase their stores and products; financial service tools such as mortgage application and micro-funding functions; and financial investment tools such as project investments and crowdfunding. It is also linked with interbank networks such as Bancnet. 

    “We are keen on providing cloud computing solutions to support more Philippine fintech companies to bolster financial inclusivity in the country, while bringing seamless and convenient digital experiences to local customers,” said Allan Guo, Alibaba Cloud Intelligence’s country manager for the Philippines. 

    Alibaba Cloud’s other clients in the Philippines include the e-wallet GCash, livestreaming platform Kumu, and fintech venture studio UBX.  

    The E-pon app will be available for download by mid-May. — Patricia B. Mirasol

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