Migrants, especially economic migrants, do not have the same benefits as citizens in the respective countries where they are located. Economic migrants often struggle to open a bank account when they first arrive to host country. As they have no permanent address or credit history they cannot become members of traditional banks, which leaves them underserved. Rewire is trying to change that and reduce the inequality of migrant workers, all the while promoting their financial inclusion. In a conversation with Geektime, Rewire's CEO Guy Kashtan told us, "Financial inclusion refers to a huge under-banked population of migrant workers who need to manage their finances in 2 separate countries. Banks are not adapted to their needs, there are language barriers, expensive commissions etc. Our goal is to provide them with a holistic financial package - a one-stop-shop - for all their financial needs in their country of origin and the new country they work in. This fulfils Rewire's financial inclusion vision, which is aligned with one of the UN's sustainable development goals of reducing inequalities."
Rewire provides innovative and accessible financial services through one easy-to-use app (including money transfer, debit cards, local payment accounts [IBAN], insurance products and permission for cross-border bill payments). As the first digital wallet designed specifically for economic migrants, Rewire is providing financial services that function properly during the financial conflicts that appear as migrants cross the border.
Imagen also works in the fintech space. They help unbanked clients become cardholders with an efficient and inexpensive way to carry out financial transactions So, so employers whose employees have no bank account or received their salaries by checks or in cash can now have these payments uploaded to Imagen cards. Moreover, there is no need to leave home to find transfer points as the transfers can be executed whenever, wherever. Imagen offers different services, like a Payroll Card (MasterCard international reloadable card), and Kessef Cash Card (which can make low-cost transfers of money from card to card using a handy and user-friendly application), and Anonymous Cards (which allows for users to load the card with up to 1,000 NIS without identifying himself and thus safeguarding his privacy). Imagen works directly with hundreds of organizations that employ migrant workers and enables employers to pay salaries directly into their cards.
With the acquisition, Rewire can now provide pre-paid debit cards for migrants. Rewire has already enacted and produced similar products in other locations across the UK and Europe, but Imagen now helps with the Israeli sector of sales/production. As they are striving for financial inclusion, Rewire is aiming towards providing a holistic migration package that serves immigrants and their families throughout their time overseas. The acquisition of Imagen will help them achieve that.
Kashtan continued, stating “Our first acquisition is a testament to how much we’ve grown over the last few years. And Imagen is a great fit for Rewire. The company has a proven track record of providing innovative services to underbanked populations. We know because we’ve worked with them for three years. The pre-paid cards will help us expand our product portfolio in Israel and bring our services in line with what we are already able to offer migrants across the UK and Europe.” He went on to mention that though Rewire explored a few alternatives for the acquisition, they found that Imagen was a perfect fit. "Together we will be able to expand and accelerate our growth. The new card service is added to our full value proposition, which is part of our holistic migration package vision."
Rewire was founded in 2015 by Guy Kashtan (CEO), Adi Ben Dayan (VP R&D), and Saar Yashalom (CTO). To date, they have raised over $61 million from investors like OurCrowd, Viola Fintech, and Glilot Capital.