SBI Ripple Asia, a collaborative initiative by San Francisco-based fintech, Ripple Labs, Inc., and Tokyo-based financial services group, SBI Holdings, is reportedly preparing to launch a distributed ledger technology (DLT) based payments app.
MoneyTap Registration Complete
In a September 26th announcement, SBI Ripple Asia (a subsidiary of SBI Holdings Inc.) said it had “completed registration as a substitute agent for electronic settlement” with Japan’s Ministry of Finance. The registration has now brought SBI Ripple Asia a step closer to obtaining the appropriate license to release its MoneyTap peer-to-peer (P2P) payments app.
Japan’s financial regulator, the Financial Services Agency (FSA), announced in May that businesses wanting to conduct electronic cash transfers through local banks’ APIs must first register with the nation’s financial bureau. This requirement has been effective since June 1st.
SBI Ripple Asia’s MoneyTap app uses DLT-based payment channels to conduct transactions via open APIs, which are operated by Japanese financial institutions. Therefore, SBI Ripple Asia has to obtain regulatory approval from the FSA before rolling out its MoneyTap money transfer services.
In March, SBI Ripple Asia had said it would introduce the DLT-powered MoneyTap app for use by three local banks and then help over 60 other financial institutions to begin using it. Takashi Okita, the CEO of SBI Ripple Asia, said in August that the highly anticipated money transfer service would be launched toward the end of this year.
Okita added that MoneyTap would have an Android and iOS version.
As covered by CryptoGlobe, Yoshitaka Kitao, the CEO of SBI Group, had said he’s hoping Ripple Labs’ XRP token becomes the world’s standard cryptocurrency. Kitao believes XRP is the most effective form of digital money in facilitating cheap and “near instant” cross-border transactions. He had also said XRP is the “only battle-tested” digital currency.
Notably, as SBI Group’s collaboration with Ripple Labs continues, the financial giant also appears to be exploring various use cases for digital assets on its own. On September 25th, the SBI Group revealed it was exploring the development of its own crypto token (“S” coin) which it aims to use to help consumers make retail payments from their smartphones.