Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have had a great start to 2020. And according to a recent announcement, Ripple is starting off the new year with a bang too.
Ripple Joins Hands With Thailand’s Oldest Bank
Per a blog post published by Ripple Labs — a crypto-centric fintech company known for its affiliation with the XRP digital asset — the company has just partnered with Siam Commercial Bank (SCB), Thailand’s oldest banks at over 100 years old, to “change the lives of their over 16 million customers.”
This partnership will see the two entities create SCB Easy, a “mobile application that runs on Ripple to deliver instant, low-cost cross-border payments.”
While exact details about the application are seemingly still up in the air, a demo of the Ripple-based application shown late last year showed that payments could be made within a minute (40 seconds, to be exact) and at low cost.
On the stage of Swell, an event focused on fintech hosted by Ripple, SCB’s SVP of Commercial Banking, Arthit Sriumporn, said on the value of such products:
“It is so difficult to send and receive money today. People must physically go to a bank branch, fill out long and complicated forms and wait for payments to be received—with no transparency. With our service, their loved ones from abroad can transfer payment and receive money immediately.”
The SCB intends to expand its operations into Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam—collectively known as the CLMV countries — in 2020, potentially increasing the reach of this new application. Further accentuating the value of the product, Sriumporn said:
Imagine you are a tourist coming to Thailand, and you can use your home country mobile application to scan for payment and eliminate the need to exchange for local currency. You can use your mobile app, scan the QR payment and receive goods right away.
This seems to be similar to OnePayFX, a similar international payment service created in a partnership between Ripple and Spanish banking giant Santander.
The funds, while not needed to keep operations afloat, will give the company “Balance sheet flexibility” as it looks to hire upwards of 150 new employees in 2020 and introduce new overseas offices to facilitate said employee additions.