Ripple Names Its First Three Preferred ‘Gold Standard’ Crypto Exchanges

Siamak Masnavi

On Thursday (16 August 2018), Ripple gave its "gold standard" seal of approval (for making xRapid payments) to three cryptocurrency exchanges around the world (one in the U.S., one in Mexico, and the other in the Philippines).

xRapid, Ripple's solution for fast, reliable, and inexpensive cross-border payments, uses the digital asset XRP to offer on-demand liquidity, which dramatically lowers costs for making real-time payments to/in emerging markets.

In the announcement posted on its "Insights" blog a short time ago, Ripple says that for xRapid to be most successful, "there needs to be a healthy ecosystem of digital asset exchange partners around the world" that allow alow quick and efficient conversion of one fiat currency to XRP at the source end and conversion of XRP to another fiat currency at the destination end.

Today, Ripple named its first three "preferred" crypto exchanges:  

  • Bittrex (for xRapid transactions that move through US Dollars)
  • Bitso (for xRapid transactions that move through Mexican Pesos)
  • Coins.ph (for xRapid transactions that move through Philippine Pesos)

Ripple explained how an xRapid payment from U.S. to Mexico would work (using Bittrex at the U.S. side and Bitso at the Mexico side):

  • "A financial institution, that has an account with Bittrex, initiates a payment in US dollars via xRapid which is instantly converted into XRP on Bittrex."
  • "The payment amount in XRP is settled over the XRP Ledger."
  • "Bitso – through its Mexican Peso liquidity pool – instantly converts the XRP into fiat, which is then settled into a destination bank account."

Cory Johnson, Chief Market Strategist at Ripple said:

“Bittrex is one of the biggest names in digital asset trading in the U.S. The same goes for Bitso in Mexico and Coins.ph in the Philippines. That makes today’s announcement an important development for xRapid. We’ve seen several successful xRapid pilots already, and as we move the product from beta to production later this year, these exchange partners will allow us to provide financial institutions with the comfort and assurance that their payments will move seamlessly between different currencies.”

Later, Johnson explained via a tweet why for naming its initial set of preferred partners Ripple had chosen Mexico and the Philippines:

Ron Hose, CEO of South East Asia’s e-wallet and financial services company, Coins.ph, had this to say:

“We are excited to be partnering with Ripple to bring the benefits of blockchain technology to cross-border payments, making sending money home more affordable for 10M+ overseas filipino workers."

It seems that Ripple has selected these three exchanges because of their large XRP holdings, which means that they can provide higher levels of liquidity. And by endorsing such exchanges, it is able to in crease their liquidity even further.

 

Featured Image Credit: Image Courtesy of Ripple

Top Cryptocurrency Coin Mixer Seized; Grayscale Investments 'Big News' Today; More Records for CME's Bitcoin Futures

Major crypto headlines from the past 24 hours: European authorities enforce a world-first seizure of a leading cryptocurrency coin mixer; New York-headquartered Grayscale Investment set to drop "big news" today; and the all-time highs continue for CME Group's bitcoin futures contracts.

The cryptocurrency market has endured some significant selling over the past day. At the time of writing, bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) are trading at $7,588.2 and $234.5; a 4.3% and 8.6% decline over the past 24 hours, respectively. As for the MVIS CryptoCompare Digital Assets 10 Index, it is currently tracking at 3,594.3 (-2.2%).

‘First Law Enforcement Action of its Kind’ Sees Top Crypto Coin Mixer Shutdown

The Dutch Financial Criminal Investigative Service (FIOD) – with the assistance of Europol and Luxembourg authorities – announced the seizure and closure of one of the three largest cryptocurrency mixer services in the world, Bestmixer.io.

This marked the “first law enforcement action of its kind against” a cryptocurrency mixer service, according to a press release from Europol. “A cryptocurrency tumbler or cryptocurrency mixing service is a service offered to mix potentially identifiable or ‘tainted’ cryptocurrency funds with others, so as to obscure the trail back to the fund’s original source,” the statement explained.

Despite the apparent victory for law enforcement, “authorities will come to regret the chain reaction that they are starting here,” according to Cornell associate professor of computer science, Emin Gün Sirer. Explaining his rational, Sirer tweeted “this kind of shutdown creates selective pressure for tumblers that cannot be shutdown. And we know, from the research world, that it’s possible to build much better ones.”

CEO of Cryptoasset Investment Giant Teases ‘Big News’ Today

Grayscale Investments – one of the world’s leading cryptoasset management firms – will be dropping some “big news” at 13:00 (UTC), its founder and chief executive Barry Silbert teased on Twitter.

Grayscale - a Digital Currency Group subsidiary - has been noticeably active on the publicity front in recent times. On May 1, it launched the largest mass media campaign the industry has ever seen and, in the time since, Silbert has been doing the rounds on the media circuit, appearing for interviews on the likes of Bloomberg, FOX Business, and Yahoo Finance.

Records Continue for CME Group’s Bitcoin Futures

CME Group – a world-leading derivatives marketplaces that also offers bitcoin futures contracts – revealed “May is shaping up to be the strongest month ever for CME Bitcoin Futures” in a client email sent on Tuesday.

According to the Chicago-based CME Group, they facilitated the trading of a staggering 33,677 bitcoin futures contracts on May 13; a new daily record. In U.S. dollar terms, this roughly equates to $1.3 billion. The firm also told clients the number of accounts trading its bitcoin futures contracts has risen to over 2,500 – also a new record high.