AUB’s cross-border payment capability draws Korea’s GLN International

March 27, 2024

AUB becoming ‘partner of choice’ for cross-border digital payments.

Asia United Bank (AUB) continues to draw the attention of global and regional players in digital payments. The bank recently partnered with GLN International, a subsidiary of Korean banking giant KEB Hana Bank, to facilitate cross-border quick response (QR) code payments.

AUB’s cross-border payment capability draws Korea’s GLN International
AUB-GLN MOA Signing (L-R): Leslie W. Villegas, vice president and Head of Financial Technology Unit; Ma. Magdalena Surtida, senior vice president, Head of Cards, Acquiring, and Salesforce Group; Jacob C. Ng, executive vice president, Chief Transformation Officer, and Head of Branch Banking Group; Wilfredo E. Rodriguez, EVP and Head of Operations and Technology Group; and Abraham T. Co, vice chairman, from AUB; Kim Kyung Ho, CEO, GLN International Inc.; Ku Inmo, Philippines Country Manager, KEB Hana Bank Manila; and Marvin Flores, Global Partnerships Team Lead, GLN International Inc.

AUB’s cross-border payment capability draws Korea’s GLN International

“The contribution of AUB to the digital retail infrastructure of the Philippines through launching cross-border products is impressive,” said Kim Kyung Ho, CEO of GLN International. “Considering AUB and GLN’s DNA in digital innovation in banking, I firmly believe that our partnership and synergy in digital payments will enhance convenience to tourists, benefit local merchants and contribute to the industry.”

Mr. Kim established his 30-year career in the digital department of KEB Hana Bank, the first to enable internet banking and first to launch mobile banking app in Korea. These initiatives gave birth in 2017 to GLN, which has since been rapidly expanding global partnerships and now enables QR cross-border payments in 10 countries and territories. GLN International has since attracted investments from financial institutions such as Korea’s Kookmin Bank, Kakao Pay, Taiwan’s Taishin Bank, and SuMi Trust Bank in Japan.

GLN International’s partnership with AUB will enable 1.45 million visitors from Korea — the leading source of tourists to the Philippines — to make QR payments at local merchants using the mobile wallets issued in their home country.

“To ensure financial inclusivity of the tourists for the benefit of local merchants, it is necessary to enable cross-border QR payments. To achieve this mission, we have chosen Asia United Bank as the most capable and forward-thinking partner,” Mr. Kim said, citing AUB PayMate, which empowers local merchants to accept cross-border digital payments, and AUB’s e-wallet HelloMoney which enables users to pay overseas.

“This is yet another proof that AUB is becoming a partner of choice of digital payments players,” said Wilfredo Rodriguez Jr., AUB’s executive vice president and Head of IT and Operations Group.

“To compete against big local banks with huge branch networks, AUB made a deliberate strategy to use technology as an enabler as well as a differentiator for its various products and services. We know the digital age will come and the competition will no longer be about the size of your branch network, but about the ability to scale up, agility, and relevance. For AUB, this is the level playing field,” he added. 

“This is why, we have been building a digital arsenal that included pioneering initiatives and innovations such as the Virtual Teller Kiosk, the country’s first branch queueing service; AUB PayMate, a revolutionary all-in-one digital payment acceptance product; and AUB HelloMoney, our e-wallet launched even ahead of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our digital innovations may have piqued the interest of many in the digital payments space — from banks and fintechs, to the world’s payment giants such as WeChat, Alipay+, the Liquid Group, Mastercard, and Visa, to name a few.”

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) welcomed the AUB-GLN International partnership which “signifies a milestone, not only for AUB, but also for the broader banking and payments industry, particularly in the realm of cross-border digital payment,” said German Constantino, officer-in-charge of Payments Policy and Development Department. “This initiative aligns with our objectives in connection with the G20 targets on enhancing cross-border payments that can lead to reduced transaction costs and faster transactions processing, contributing to broader economic development and greater financial inclusion.”
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