Facebook (FB) is set to move forward with an e-money service for remittances and electronic cash if given approval by regulators in Ireland.
Users would be able to store money on Facebook and use it for online payments or for remittances.
The authorisation from the Central Bank to become an “e-money” institution would allow Facebook to issue units of stored monetary value that represent a claim against the company.
This e-money would be valid throughout Europe via a process known as “passporting”.
Already Facebook has a payment system app developers who charge for in-app purchases, in which Facebook charges 30% for payments.
Revenues from this accounted for 10% of total revenues last year.
Facebook banking is a smart — and expected — move for the social media company.
Facebook is looking to the Irish Central Bank due to its connections in the country. Once approved, Facebook will reportedly use its service to delve into the multi-billion dollar industry that is international remittances.
Remitting money internationally would give Facebook a significant revenue stream as it grows its user base in other countries.
Already India surpassed 100 million FB users, with the number expected to surpass the number of users in the U.S. (180 million).
FB stock is up 2% in early morning trading.