Ripple (XRP) rallied again for an intraday high near $0.60 as the San Francisco-based blockchain startup announced the commercial release of xRapid, its cryptocurrency-powered enterprise blockchain product. The announcement makes clear that xRapid is “commercially available and moving into production with multiple customers.”
The company’s update names three business customers for xRapid: MercuryFX, Cuallix, and Catalyst Corporate Federal Credit Union. Additionally, the post implies that there are more customers signing on as well.
The draw for these customers has been what Ripple has touted as their main solutions: fast and inexpensive cross-border payments. The implication is that customers had relied on the SWIFT payment network to perform payments across different countries, which Ripple has consistently stated is now an outdated solution. All three businesses provide their customers with remittance services in the United States, Mexico, and Europe. As the Ripple update states:
“xRapid eliminates the need for a pre-funded nostro account when executing a cross-border payment. It sources liquidity from XRP on exchanges around the world. As a result, cross-border transactions occur in minutes and at a lower cost compared to traditional methods, which take days and incur high foreign exchange fees.”
XRP has a history of steep price swings, which are especially prone to news events or lack thereof. However, even during the 2017 bull run where Ripple reached over $3.00, the company didn’t change its mission and solution, which is narrowly defined in nearly all company publications: making cross-border payments cheaper and faster. The ultimate moonshot that Ripple has publicized is to replace the SWIFT payment network entirely.
However, many investors and regulators have not seen it that way. As CCN.com reported in May, disgruntled XRP investors filed a class action lawsuit that alleged the company violated U.S. securities regulations by selling the token to the general public. With a breathtaking fall from its near 2017 highs, many investors felt burned by the hype.
In this effort, the company backing the third-largest cryptocurrency has head-hunted key employees from the finance industry — and even SWIFT itself.
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