Los Angeles, CA–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–June 27,2002–Representatives of the Mexico Presidential Office of Mexicans Abroad and National Council La Raza today partnered with Bank of America to formally launch in Los Angeles several new initiatives that will directly benefit the Southern California Hispanic population.
The bank announced that SafeSend, a first-of-its-kind international ATM remittance service designed to revolutionize the way people send money to families and friends in Mexico, is available today in the nearly 300 Bank of America banking centers in Los Angeles County. Bank of America also announced it is now accepting the Mexican Consulate ID card at banking centers nationwide, allowing more Hispanics to open new accounts and cash checks.
“Expanding access to capital is a critical component of the U.S.-Mexico ‘Partnership for Prosperity’ program,” said Dr. Juan Hernández, a member of Mexico President Vicente Fox’s cabinet and director of the Presidential Office of Mexicans Abroad. “We want to implement initiatives that improve Mexican access to capital on more competitive terms, as well as enhance understanding of and access to financial systems. Good examples are initiatives that seek to lower remittance costs, such as the Bank of America SafeSend service, and acceptance of the Matricula Consular, which allows for greater participation by Mexican citizens as important contributors to the American economy.”
“SafeSend was created based on direct input from our customers. They wanted an easier-and less expensive-option to send money to their loved ones in Mexico,” said Leticia Aguilar, Bank of America consumer executive for the Greater Los Angeles Division. “The development of SafeSend is just one of the ways Bank of America is working in the interest of the Hispanic community. We understand and care about the strong family bonds our customers maintain with loved ones in Mexico – and their need for more convenience and security when sending money across the border.”
SafeSend brings ease-of-use, convenience and expediency to the remittance process. With SafeSend, customers send money to Mexico by phone or electronically 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, without leaving home. In Mexico, the funds are available within minutes at over 20,000 ATMs. There is no additional paperwork after signing up for SafeSend.
SafeSend also reduces the cost to send money to Mexico. According to U.S. Treasurer Rosario Marin, in 2001 Mexican citizens in the U.S. paid $2 billion, or 20 percent, to send $10 billion to family members and others in Mexico. The Bank of America SafeSend product will cost $10 per transaction for bank customers and $15 for non-customers.
“Financial services are at the heart of our economy and to be a participant, one must have access to banking services,” said Tommy Espinoza, Senior Business Advisor to the President of the NCLR. “As the nation’s largest Hispanic civil rights organizations, the National Council La Raza (NCLR) supports efforts such as those of Bank of America that improve the lives and opportunities for Hispanics living in the U.S. and in their home countries. These efforts form the stepping stones to financial security, freedom and most importantly acceptance as a contributor to the America economy and in helping to advance economic opportunities for Hispanics in general and Mexicans specifically.”
Both SafeSend and the Matricula Card will benefit the nearly 21.7 million Mexican citizens living in the U.S. Of that figure, approximately 6 million live in California with Southern California having the nation’s largest percentage of Mexican citizens.
SafeSend and the Matricula Card are being supported by one of largest U.S. brand and product advertising campaigns targeted exclusively to Hispanic consumers. Created and developed entirely in Spanish, the TV, radio and print ads will include the tagline “Creemos en Ti,” which means, “We believe in you.”
Bank of America is planning several events in Los Angeles-area Hispanic communities to promote SafeSend and acceptance of the Matricula card. The events will include on-site radio remote broadcasts. The following is a listing of event sites:
Friday, June 28th
Santa Ana Consulate (828 N. Broadway St., Santa Ana, 92701)
Friday, July 5th
Pomona Main BC (444 S. Garey Blvd., Pomona, 91766)
Friday, July 26th
San Bernadino Consulate (230 West 400 South, 2nd Floor, San Bernadino, 92401)
SafeSend is also available to consumers via 1-866-SAFESEND or online at http/:www.bankofamerica.com/safesend. By August, Bank of America will introduce the SafeSend service to participating banking centers in an additional nine markets across the country, reaching more than 50% of the Mexican population in the U.S.
About Bank of America
One of the world’s leading financial services companies, Bank of America is committed to making banking work for customers and clients like it never has before. Through innovative technologies and the ingenuity of its people, Bank of America provides individuals, small businesses and commercial, corporate and institutional clients across the United States and around the world new and better ways to manage their financial lives. The company enables customers to do their banking and investing whenever, wherever and however they choose through the nation’s largest financial services network, including approximately 4,400 domestic offices and 13,000 ATMs, as well as 38 international offices serving clients in 190 countries, and an Internet Web site that provides online access for more than 3 million active users, more than any other bank.
Bank of America stock (ticker: BAC) is listed on the New York, Pacific and London stock exchanges. The company’s Web site is http/:www.bankofamerica.com. News, speeches and other corporate information may be found at http/:www.bankofamerica.com/newsroom.
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