SAN JOSE, Calif.[DEMO2014] November 21, 2014 — San Francisco based Hellobit today debuted a service distinctly aimed at disrupting the $500+ billion a year money transfer industry used to send money home to families in emerging markets. International remittance is dominated by companies such as Western Union and MoneyGram, and used heavily to send money to India, Mexico, The Philippines and many other countries.
“After traveling the country and vetting hundreds of companies on our DEMO Tour, we are excited to bring Hellobit as one of the few selected companies launching new products solving big problems at DEMO Fall 2014,” said Erick Schonfeld, executive producer of DEMO. “Hellobit has the potential to be a game-changer.”
Hellobit wants to reduce the fees of remittance paid by consumers which can cost upward of 12 percent by utilizing new digital currency technologies. Hellobit also plans to grow quickly in a unique model that lets anyone with a mobile phone sign up as an exchanger or delivery agent, much as Uber lets people make money using their car.
Once a person signs up, their background is checked, and they can then earn money or bitcoin by delivering local currency to the recipients of the sent funds.
“Overall, the transaction should cost much less than the traditional methods”, said Ali Goss, CEO of Hellobit.
“Hellobit never touches a customer’s money”, says newly appointed CTO Alf Watt. A move which ensures security and builds trust for its users. Using the bitcoin network, a customer can directly send money to anyone worldwide and Hellobit notifies the receiver via text message. The recipient is given the location of a person or place nearby where he can then exchange the bitcoin for local currency.
While Hellobit is starting with bitcoin, which can be obtained via a growing number of exchanges, the company plans that ultimately it will be a background function and users will be able to initiate their transfer from any digital wallet service or bank account.
Already, companies like Dish Network, Virgin Galactic and Overstock.com have started accepting digital currency as a form of payment. Paypal announced its support to integrate bitcoin, the growing currency earlier this month.
“If we can reduce the cost associated with sending one’s own money globally by even 5 percent, it would save consumers $25 billion a year,” said Goss. “That is not a small amount of money back in the pockets of the people who need it most.”
Hellobit is now allowing people to sign up on its website, and will notify users as it opens each corridor for business.
Based in San Francisco, CA, Hellobit Inc was founded in February of 2014 with the purpose of making it easier and cheaper to send your own money. With the emerging use of digital currency technologies such as bitcoin, many traditional banking services such as money transfer are able to be made more efficient and less costly. Hellobit looks to continue to build new and more efficient services around this technology