Money transfer company Xpress Money has announced plans to double mobile wallet operations in Africa in the first half of 2019.

The announcement comes amidst a growth in the mobile wallet segment in Africa, where over half of the world’s mobile money services operate.

Xpress Money believes that though currently driven by cash, the region will be driven by mobile money in the “next few years”.

The money transfer firm reported a 37% growth in mobile wallet credits to Africa last year. It expects the trend to continue this year.

In announcing its expansion plan, Xpress Money cited the financial inclusion survey by World Bank’s Global Findex Database in 2017.

The study found 21% of adults in Africa having a mobile money account.

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The figure is nearly double compared to 2014 and the study claims it’s the highest of any region across the globe.

Xpress Money COO Sudhesh Giriyan said: “While the journey of mobile money technology started with M-Pesa in East Africa, today West Africa and South Africa are strong bastions for mobile money services. Uganda, Burundi Tanzania, Nigeria and Zimbabwe are few of the other important mobile markets in Africa in addition to Kenya.

“Leveraging our reach in the continent, we have tied up with telecom service providers to expand our mobile wallet network in 2019.”