Blockchain Groups Gain Momentum in Cross-Border Payments

  • Diana Asatryan
  • June 22, 2016
  • 2

canstockphoto1657339Real-time international payments are not far over the horizon anymore.

San Francisco-based Ripple announced that seven global banks have joined its network to improve their cross-border payments experience. Among the banks are Santander, UniCredit, UBS, ReiseBank, CIBC, National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD), and ATB Financial.

All of the banks tested transferring money via Ripple technology in various use cases before today, the company said this morning.

Santander, for example, launched a pilot app to enable fast international transfers last month. The app is currently being tested among 6,000 of Santander’s staffers, and allows for next-day international transfers between the U.K. and 21 countries – EU members and the U.S.

Transfer amounts can vary between £10 and £10,000, and can be made at any time of the day, Ed Metzger, head of innovation technology and operations at Santander UK, told Bank Innovation.

Cross-border payments today using standard processes is really lagging, and we recognize that. Our big focus is to create a better way to move money, specifically looking at smaller payments. So we will see how our staff interacts with the pilot, how they are using it, identify the problem, before we decide to release the product to the public.

Ripple’s global network now includes 12 of the top 50 global banks, the company said.

Taking blockchain from use cases to real-world applications has been on the agenda of many industry players recently. The Linux Foundation-led Hyperledger project announced today that it has also added seven new members to its own network: Belink Technologies, BitSE, INVeSHARE, MonetaGo, Moscow Exchange (Russia’s largest exchange group), Norbloc and Onchain.

Totaling 44 members, the Hyperledger Project collaboration is working to advance blockchain tech by developing an open standard for distributed ledgers.

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