Ripple along with other cryptocurrencies might be on a bearish trend in the past weeks. In addition to this, unlike Bitcoin and Ethereum that has been considered a commodity by the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Ripple is a totally different story. In fact, it has faced lawsuits with a claim that XRP is actually a security.
And because of this, Ripple was forced to hire people who can help Ripple decentralize. In addition to this, they have also focused on getting big names from celebrities such as Ashton Kutcher, Madonna, to the likes of former US President Bill Clinton in order to promote the cryptocurrency.
Exploring the Asian Market
Aside from working with companies such as Western Union, Ripple is also looking to explore the Asian Market. In particular, Ripple is looking to explore both Indian and Japanese markets. Ripple’s Navin Gupta who works as the Managing Director of India, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and North Africa recently mentioned that Ripple has been adding banks in India to its network. The network is known as RippleNet.
According to SVP of Product Asheesh Birla, “We realized that if you get the top three banks in India onto Ripple, you get 80% of the market share. And then we looked at—where’s the future? And so we realized in the next five years, one billion people will become banked in India, but they’ll be banked through their phone. So then we started targeting mobile phone providers and telcos”.
In addition to this, Gupta also mentioned that Ripple is looking to tap into the remittance market. For India, this is a huge market considering that it has ballooned to a $70 billion industry. The competitor for Ripple in this endeavor is a 60-year old banking system that is known as Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, which is better known as SWIFT.
Just how good is Ripple’s solution to the remittance market? According to them, SWIFT has been reported to have around a 6% error rate. And this is something that Ripple is currently working on. It is identifying ways on how to improve their solution. According to Gupta, “We are building a message-based superhighway through which money can travel and, mind you, they don’t have to be cryptocurrencies; fiat currencies can also travel via our blockchain protocol”.
Exploring the Middle East
Middle East is also seen by Ripple as a potential market that they can tap. Since the region is known for oil and the transactions are made in millions, they are looking closely just how Ripple can enter the market. “We are already working with several banks globally especially in the Middle Eastern region. We also have customers in Africa and Europe who are conducting millions of transactions via our network protocol instead of using SWIFT”.
Gupta even went on saying that 6% failure rate of SWIFT, not to mention the liquidity to be stored in form of nostro accounts can be a headache for the banks. What Gupta thinks is that Ripple’s solution can be compared to the messaging platform WhatsApp. He said that: “For example, if a bank wants to send money to another, then first it has to add the second bank to its trusted list, as you would do in case of a WhatsApp contact. The backend of the technology checks the name of the bank, account and does due diligence on all the anti-money laundering rules in place”.