International Remittances with Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies

Let me tell you two stories. Just over a year ago, cryptocurrency prices went through the roof. At the height of the boom, cryptocurrency exchange Binance experienced 240,000 new sign-ups in one hour (!). And people both lost and made lots of money.

But while the boom had a positive effect on cryptocurrency adoption, it was still difficult for cryptocurrency traders to liquidate their investments. Sure, you could convert your cryptocurrency back to dollars if you were based in the US. But for citizens of other (often developing) countries, this was not so easy.

Most major cryptocurrency exchanges limited investors from particular countries or limited converting cryptocurrency to a local currency. And alternatives to cryptocurrency exchanges, like peer-to-peer trading or Bitcoin ATMs were (and still are) largely non-existent in such countries. Clearly, this presents a problem for many.

Sending Money Abroad

The second problem not about converting money, but about sending it. In 2018, around $600 billion was sent in remittances; foreign workers sending their hard-earned cash to relatives in their home country.

Although so many people send money abroad, the cost of sending this money is still significant; the average cost of sending $200 abroad is a whopping 7% and a transfer can take up to 5 business days.

So despite the vast amounts of funds sent every year in remittances, transaction fees are still sizeable, and transaction speed is still low.

Two Problems — One Solution

We, Serge Wilfried Ouedraogo and Serge Kiema (AKA “the two Serge’s”) experienced both of these problems first-hand. We’ve been active cryptocurrency traders. Last year, we found it was very difficult for us to convert our profits into cash.

And as immigrants, we have experienced the difficulty of sending money abroad. Money transfer services such as WesternUnion are too costly and too slow. It doesn’t feel fair to pay these amounts to send our hard-earned dollars to our relatives back home.

That’s how we came up with the idea of DuniaPay. With DuniaPay, we envision a frictionless money transfer service, that allows anyone to convert cryptocurrency into any local currency, send money anywhere, and do this all quickly and with low cost.

We’ve just launched our service at — Now, you can use your Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ripple, Stellar, ZCash, or Monero to send money to 20 different countries in under 48 hours. Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll be expanding the number of currencies and countries supported, as well as decreasing transaction times to less than 24 hours.

We’re excited to be able to present DuniaPay to you, and know we still have a long way to go. But if you have some time available, please take a look and tell us what you think.

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DuniaPay is based in Canada, and is registered with the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) as a money service business.