RippleNet in the desert state. National Bank of Kuwait launches cross-border payment method with Ripple product
Despite the continuing bear market, the adoption of blockchain technology is progressing steadily. As announced by the National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) on Thursday 27 December, the start-up Ripple will provide the bank with the technology for cross-border payments.
The National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) is the country’s largest financial services provider. Founded in 1952, it currently employs 6,000 people and manages assets worth US$86 billion. NBK claims to be the first bank in Kuwait to implement a live international payment transfer product based on RippleNet’s blockchain technology. According to the financial institution, NBK Direct Remit, the product’s name, will accelerate cross-border money transfers.
The Ripple Innovation
Dimitrios Kokosioulis, Deputy CEO Group Operations & Technology, believes this service is a significant achievement for customers. It is now possible to transfer money within seconds at any time of the day. Kokosioulis also added that NBK is currently focusing more on innovation in cashless payments.
Marcus Treacher, SVP of Customer Success at Ripple, explained the reasons for the deal:
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“We will continue to work with the NBK to connect them with more RippleNet partners so that their customers can pay faster and cheaper around the world”
However, as great as this news is for the Ripple company, there is little in it for the XRP holders. Ripple executives are often contradictory in their statements on the matter:
This means that the headlines showcasing Ripple’s partnerships with more and more banks are good — Ripple the company is succeeding — but also don’t mean much for XRP gaining adoption.
Now this isn’t to say that banks will never adopt xRapid (and start using XRP). In fact, this has been a part of the Ripple business plan from the very beginning. Get banks using xCurrent and then cross-sell them into xRapid. Banks may come to love xRapid.
Or they might not.
Ripple itself sees its payment system as the future global standard for interbank payments, enabling cost-effective and traceable payments in real time. In 2018, the National Bank of Kuwait followed partners such as the Japanese bank Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group and the Malaysian CIMB Group Holdings Bhd into RippleNet.
Which applications from the Ripple product range are to be used, however, left both sides open. It is also questionable whether Ripple’s xRapid platform or the XRP token will play a role in the bank’s concept in the future.
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