New kid on the block

Rajnish Kumar, Instapay Technologies Sdn Bhd CEO and co-founder

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Instapay Technologies Sdn Bhd is the latest homegrown enterprise-level, financial services player, providing key payroll management and remittance services for migrant workforce. Developed as an e-wallet with a complementary prepaid Mastercard service, co-founder and CEO Rajnish Kumar tells Enterprise that the business is meant to fill the financial services gap for Malaysia’s migrant workforce.

“Instapay is an e-wallet that is an alternative to bank accounts for migrant workers. Workers, especially migrant foreign workers often do not find it convenient to use conventional bank’s services due to various reasons like lack of familiarity, the language barrier, or just the inability to get to a physical branch.

“This leads to this segment being underbanked or even unbanked in many cases. Instapay bridges this gap and helps them use formal financial channels in a convenient way for their transactions.”

Convenience for workers aside, the service is a potentially decisive cost-saving tool for employers. One of the key challenges for employers, according to Rajnish, are the costs and risks associated with transporting and handling large amounts of cash. The physical act of disbursing cash is a very costly endeavour for businesses.

“We came across a company providing janitorial services that was incurring nearly RM25 per employee because they delivered cash-based salaries to employees working in various office buildings. In fact, even the employees save anywhere from RM25 to RM50 that they would have otherwise had to spend in order to access remittance services,” Rajnish says.

The service keeps employee downtime to a minimum, as there is no longer a need for large chunks of a workforce to take time off work every few weeks to deposit cash into a bank. This in turn, significantly reduces the overall risk of employees or employers getting robbed.

The company keeps costs very low for employers and employees alike, thanks to its efficient salary disbursement proposition. Instapay opens salary accounts for employees and employers are able to seamlessly disburse salary into Instapay Accounts of their employees.

Instapay’s tech platform enables an employer to smoothly onboard their employees and start paying salary. This entails a quick and seamless due diligence process that requires companies to submit to various know-your-customer (KYC) protocols. This includes proof of incorporation, along with related documents, in addition to then signing an agreement with Instapay. “It’s a simple process, and accounts can typically be opened in just a few hours,” Rajnish says.

Employees are presently onboarded through face-to-face KYC protocols. Instapay sends its operations team over to a company and onboards employees immediately, after which their accounts are activated. “Given the amount of technology we have embedded in the platform, this onboarding process takes just a few minutes per employee,” he adds.

According to Rajnish, the multilingual app is supported by a multilingual call centre, which provides an added layer of convenience and familiarity to migrant workers. Further, the prepaid Mastercard allows quick and easy access to cash. “The Instapay app also has an easy-to-use remittance service, which enables employees to send funds to their home countries without having to go to a physical remittance counter.”

In this regard, remittance fees and overall processing fees are competitive, according to Rajnish. Instapay charges a one-time RM10 fee for the prepaid Mastercard, after which there are no further account maintenance-related charges. Cash withdrawals from ATMs, meanwhile, come with a RM1 fee.

“Thanks to our partnership with IME Ria Money, remittance rates are very competitive, and further, we are able to facilitate remittance to a large number of countries.”

For all the convenience that Instapay brings to businesses however, it’s worth noting that the company is something of a late entrant into what is now a crowded enterprise-level remittance and e-wallet field.

According to Rajnish, most service providers tend to build a largely transactional relationship with these workers. “Instapay, meanwhile, seeks to build a more enduring relationship, not by just helping them with more efficient remittance services, but to also get them to manage their finances better.

“Employers also find it much easier to work with us as our processes are very customer-friendly. We go that extra mile to meet the particular needs of a business.”