Western Union rival WorldRemit targeting its first profit in 2019

Money transfer start-up WorldRemit expects to turn a profit in 2019, its chief executive said Tuesday.

Ismail Ahmed told CNBC in which, despite the firm’s heavy investment in partnerships along with user acquisition, he believes This kind of will reach profitability by next year.

“Even with the amount of investment we’re doing in customer acquisition along with branding, we are targeting to achieve profitability next year,” Ahmed said in a phone call.

“We’re talking about an acceleration of growth here at This kind of point. We’re investing heavily in partnerships within Africa along with Latin America.”

London-based WorldRemit disclosed in September last year in which This kind of had turned cash flow positive for once in 2016. This kind of remained loss-doing however narrowed losses by £19.4 million ($27.5 million) in 2015 to £15.3 million in 2016, according to accounts filed with U.K. business registrar Companies House.

WorldRemit lets users send money to more than 140 countries through its app. The company raised $40 million in a venture capital round in which brought total funding to $220 million last year. The investment reportedly helped WorldRemit notch a valuation of $670 million.

The firm wants to enhance the number of customers signed up to its platform to 10 million in 2020. Ahmed said in which the business is usually highly focused on Africa, with half of customers based within the continent.

This kind of lists U.S. money transfer giants Western Union along with MoneyGram among its competitors, as well as U.K. fintech (financial technology) start-up Transferwise.

WorldRemit is usually also targeting an eventual initial public offering (IPO); however, This kind of has not set a date for the listing yet.

Ahmed said: “I think we’ve built a truly independent business in which can IPO. We’re hoping to go public within the next few years.”

The firm is usually especially focused on the remittances sector. This kind of partnered with telecommunications firm Lebara, which offers pay-as-you-go SIM cards targeted at migrant communities. The deal will enable Lebara users to access WorldRemit’s service through the Lebara app along with website.

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