The XRP blockchain by Ripple has been subject to a lot of significant news going on in Eastern Asia – specifically Japan and ASEAN. Of note is the adoption of Ripple blockchain by two banks in the region for cross-border payments.
Welcome to our first bi-weekly roundup of the most discussion-worthy news content related to Ripple’s blockchain network and cryptocurrency XRP, in addition to exciting news from Japan as well as Switzerland and a brief look at periodical price movements.
Intentional XRP Sales Decrease for Q2 as Ripple Tackles Inaccurate Data Reporting
As a reaction to allegations made by Bitwise against CoinMarketCap (which have since been confirmed by the site), Ripple has issued a post recognizing the enormity of the situation and detailing the “steps” they are taking to contribute to resolving it.
Ripple states that it it will be lowering its sales (as a percentage of reported volume) in Q2 2019, halving its programmatic sales – and expect others to follow suit, claiming that:
“By being more demanding about our expected standards for market structure and reporting, we hope to begin raising the bar industry-wide…“
“We hope others in the crypto ecosystem will follow our lead, and ultimately, that our joint efforts will fuel a growing level of trust, among institutions and consumers alike, and the entire digital asset market will thrive.”
Breanne Madigan joins Ripple (ex-Goldman Sachs)
Celia Wan of The Block has revealed Ripple has recently, according to internal sources, on-boarded “Wall-street veteran” Breanne Madigan upon departure from her role as ‘Head of Institutional Sales and Strategy’ for digital-asset wallet Blockchain.com .
She confirmed this news directly with the publication in the following statement:
“I am thrilled to confirm that I have joined Ripple to lead the Global Institutional Markets team… This is an exciting time to be joining the Ripple team, helping to foster mass adoption of digital assets and transforming global payments systems across the world.”
Before Blockchain.com, Madigan spent 14 years working at Goldman Sachs, the final three of which she was the Head of Institutional Wealth Services for the Americas.
Ripple Opens New Office in Switzerland
A record has surfaced detailing Ripple’s opening of a business entity, on Moneyhouse.ch (a register of commercial data and business information). The entry states that the office was commercially registered on May 29th 2019 and is located in Zürich, Switzerland.
TokenPost further notes that the team of management personnel includes Peter Eames, Catrina Luchsinger Gähwiler, and Elizabeth Chien.
The registration text describes the intent of the new business, that
“The purpose of the company is the sale of digital assets XRP to institutional buyers.
“The Company may establish branches and subsidiaries in Switzerland and abroad, engage in other business activities in Switzerland and abroad and conduct any business directly or indirectly related to the purpose.”
SCB Confirms Ripple (But Not XRP Blockchain) for Cross-Border Payment Service
Siam Commercial Bank (SCB), which is recognized as both the oldest and largest bank in Thailand, has been working towards launching an international payments service which utilizes the Ripple XRP blockchain.
On the 22nd May 2019, SCB elaborated via Twitter that whilst usage of the Ripple blockchain was confirmed – “you may have to wait for [a] further announcement”, with regards to XRP token integration.
This suggests that the system could be using the xRapid protocol which, unlike xCurrent, does not support the XRP cryptocurrency.
Ripple had previously stated that SCB was “Pioneer[ing] RippleNet’s ‘Multi-hop’ Feature”, a feature which is built primarily for streamlining costs and reducing turnaround times for cross-border payments in the ASEAN (Association of South Eastern Asian Nations) region. The report also specified that this would make SCB the first financial institution to do so.
Earlier in May 2019, it was reported that the SCB-Ripple ‘multi-hop’ transfer process takes just 1 minute – compared the previous average of two days.
Ripple-backed SBIVC Eyes Institutional Investment Market
SBIVC has indicated, speaking to Cointelegraph, that it plans to expand its services to allow for institutional investors upon implementation of regulatory measured. Since launching under the name of VCTRADE in July 2018, the platform has only allowed for retail investors to take part.
The statement is as follows:
“SBIVC currently offer services only for retail customers… After AML/CFT method and custody solution that we are planning to implement are finalized, we would like to move forward and start providing services to institutional investors.”
SBIVC is crypto exchange developed by Japanese bank SBI Holdings. The company is a direct partner to Ripple, as they have been operating a DLT payments platform together under the name of ‘SBI Ripple Asia’ since 2016.
Additionally to the favorable Ripple (XRP) news, the CEO of SBI, one of japan’s prominent financial services groups, Yoshitaka Kitao joined the Ripple Board of Directors in April 2019.
The two companies are also responsible for creating the blockchain-payments mobile app ‘MoneyTap’, which has reportedly received investment from 13 Japanese banks.
Other SBI Ripple Asia News: Money Tap Introduced Retail Affiliate Scheme in Japan (May 30th)
‘Xpring’ In The Works: Ripple-Backed Startup Confirms XRP Ledger-Based Banking App, Then Changes Name
In a recent speech delivered in Amsterdam at a Bitrue community event, Bitrue CEO and founder of XRPL Labs, Wietse Wind announced that the company is developing a mobile banking app and signing platform called ‘Xign’, which uses XRP ledger.
Or at least it was called Xign until the company decided to rebrand it as Xumm just this week – which likely comes as a result of XRPL Labs fearing legal consequences, as the name is in use by a company owned by Goldman Sachs.
In the announcement Wind stressed that rather than considering the product as a ‘crypto wallet’, it is more akin to a ‘mobile banking app’ for reasons such as fiat currency integration and ease-of-use. This includes integration of an account directory as a means of mitigating input of wallet numbers with large character-strings.
XRPL Labs is backed by Ripple as it is part of the Xpring initiative, in which Ripple provides incubation, investment and other services to “proven” entrepreneurs in return for them working cooperatively as well as building their solutions on the XRP token and ledger.
TaoTao: Yahoo-backed Cryptocurrency Exchange featuring XRP Margin Trading Launches in Japan
Cryptocurrency exchange TaoTao launched on 30th May 2019 following an announcement the company had previously published via Twitter. At present, the platform offers trading in BTC and ETH – in addition to XRP, LTC and BCH margin trading.
Yahoo Japan Corp is heavily associated with this new exchange, which appears to have boosted interest from both the press and the public significantly.
The Japanese arm of Yahoo purchased a 40% minority stake in BitARG Exchange Tokyo in April 2018, and TaoTao is built upon the technical and legal frameworks built for BitARG.
Following the positive Ripple (XRP) news in Japan and Switzerland, the token price has seen a steady incline.
Information correct as of 20:00 PM, 6th June 2019