In the past, it took a month or so to send a letter to your loved ones to the United States.  The fastest way to communicate in those days was through telegram (a technology which most people don’t know now).  Sending money was also a big problem; most of the old folks rely on postal money order.  

Paying your bills – water, electricity, and credits – was a big hassle.  You had to join a long queue before you can finally settle your accounts. The same thing happened when you withdraw money from the bank.

Most of these “rituals,” if you call them that way, will soon become obsolete.  We totally live in “a whole new world” these days.  Take about information highway and everything seems possible now.

In fact, you can pay your bills now without using any cash.  You don’t have to go to the bank to withdraw money anymore.  As long as you have your mobile phone with you, you can do business without hassles.

Farfetched?  No, it’s already a reality.  Thanks to Cromwell Bonghanoy, the chief executive officer of TagumPay Network Solutions Corporation.  Dr. Asterio Ramiscal serves as the chief operating officer with King Paul Bryan Auditor is the chairman.

“TagumPay is a mobile-based payment platform where you can do cashless transactions using your mobile phone,” Cromwell explains. “Actually, it is a payment center that offers non-bank financial services.”

Instead of bringing cash when you travel or pay your credits, you can now rely on TagumPay.  There’s nothing to worry about. “It is fast and hassle-free because it provides an enhanced security system that ensure all of your transactions are safe,” he points out.

Cromwell wants to emphasize that TagumPay is only a payment platform and not a bank thing nor an investment scheme.  “It is a mobile application that uses a software system with seamless features,” he says.  “It has the capacity to accept top-up or loading of funds through TagumPay outlets and registered dealers.”

TagumPay was launched in Tagum City, Davao del Norte last May 27.  It will also be brought to the business district in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig, and then in Cebu.  “I do strongly pledge that we gonna bring TagumPay app all over the country,” says Cromwell in his speech during the launching.

In an exclusive interview before the program, he says that he and his team are also thinking of having branches in Singapore and Hong Kong (where many Overseas Filipino Workers are living).

“TagumPay app is our payment gateway business that deserves recognition in the corporate world,” he says.  “We need not stay only in Tagum because we strictly follow our local business bureau.  We strictly adhere to the policies of the Securities and Exchange Commission. More importantly, we strictly comply to the requirements of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas for our all-access, visa, debit cards.”

The idea of TagumPay was born out from his travels in foreign countries. “The drive that we have right now comes from our travel abroad where we personally experienced the Octopus Card,” he says.  “(It’s) a universal card that can be used in bus, taxi, and convenience store.”

It was also from one of his trips to Guangzhou, China that he witnessed how WeChat works.  He was amazed on how his Chinese friends paid their bills and transferred funds to their peers through a QR code.

Cromwell thought the Philippines is far behind in this kind of technology but it could be introduced in a different manner.  “If I have some credits from you, I could send my payments to you from my funds in real time wherever you are,” he says.  “Who else here have no internet connection or mobile data?

“We have imagined the future that even if we go to our night market, we could pay our vendors for every single centavo we owe from them through my cellphone,” he adds.

But this dream should not be in this part of the country only but it should be shared to other cities and even to the whole world.  “It maybe ambitious yet it is very realistic,” Cromwell says.  “How can we not bring TagumPay app to other countries when the debit card attached is a Visa/Master Card.  Definitely, its all-access feature will link our fund to other banks which would be easy for us to make fund transfers.”

He says that the team is not in a hurry to do all these.  They want to do it little by little but surely.  “To avoid glitches,” he says, “we gonna do it phase by phase.  Even if TagumPay app is still a beta version, our path is heading towards in partnership with WeChat, AliPay, and Dragon Pay.”

In his speech, Cromwell also corrects the impression that this digital innovation is gearing towards a competition with such kind of businesses.  “We see ourselves in complementary with GCash, PayMaya or even Coins.Ph in the future,” he says, adding that to prove this claim, he invited Streetby app during the launching.