Even though Californian Ripple didn’t start the year exactly at its best, it seems that things are turning out for good.
After last week when they signed a deal with UAE Exchange, and went into the Chinese online shopping market, it seems that next in line is a global payments giant Western Union. It is reported that they are now test driving Ripple’s transfer technology.
CFO Raj Agrawal told media that efforts were still in a “testing phase” and there was nothing so far in the process that would be a “big unlock.”
CEO Hikmet Ersek said on Tuesday that Western Union is experimenting with Ripple and XRP for settling transactions and for capital optimization. He said that they think of blockchain as something interesting as an application which they may use. He was also referencing to “working capital optimization” which is pretty important since Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse said, that banks will adopt XRP as it will free them of having to park currency in so-called “nostro” and “vostro” accounts to facilitate transfers.
Just for a reminder, last month Ripple announced a collaboration with Western Union’s rival Moneygram, which is also testing XRP in money transfers.
This is pretty interesting because it is known that many banks use Ripple’s blockchain software known as XCurrent to keep track of their transfers. However, it’s a pretty small number of those that are actually using a product (known as XRapid) that integrates XRP.
“We’ve been testing different products with Western Union for a while. We’re excited about our work towards a pilot implementation of xRapid, which uses XRP in payment flows,” Ripple said in a statement.
Ripple is a blockchain-based settlement protocol and a cryptocurrency that has reached almost half of Bitcoin’s market capitalization in January 2018, when its price grew to over $3.00 per coin. At the time of writing, however, the XRP price was $1.13.