Oman's second-largest bank (by market value), BankDhofar, has become the latest financial institution to join Californian FinTech startup Ripple's global payment network RippleNet. The news was tweeted on Sunday (February 17th) by Navin Gupta, Managing Director for South Asia and MENA (Middle East and North Africa) at Ripple.
BankDhofar, at the present time, is "one of the fastest growing financial services institution in the Sultanate" with "a nationwide network of 70 branches."
Per BankDhofar's press release, it is the first bank in the Sultanate of Oman to adopt RippleNet. The bank's customers will be able to send money overseas in near real-time by using its mobile banking app. Gupta says that this service will be especially interesting to the many non-resident Indian workers living in Oman who wish to send money to their friends/relatives back home.
Since going live on RippleNet, BankDhofar has carried out funds transfers to India in "less than 2 minutes" using Ripple's xCurrent product. How do we know that it is xCurrent (seemingly, Ripple's most popular product) that BankDhofar is using? The clue is in the language used in this paragraph from the scanned press release image that was tweeted by Gupta:
"Ripple's leading Blockchain solution for cross-border payments, including its bi-directional messaging and instant settlement features, enables BankDhofar to save customers' time when sending payments overseas, using BankDhofar Mobile banking App."
The words "bi-directional messaging" strongly suggest that xCurrent rather than xRapid is being used since the former's main purpose is to provide bi-directional messaging between the sending and receiving institutions and if xRapid (which uses XRP as the bridging currency) was being used, Ripple would have made a separate announcement itself. Still, this is good news for Ripple since once a financial institution starts using one of Ripple's products, it is more likely to use other Ripple products in the future.
Here is Gupta's tweet:
As covered here, on January 8th, Ripple announced that it had acquired another 13 customers for RippleNet, bringing the total to over 200.
Ripple's announcement also mentioned that Ripple says that five of these new customers, JNFX, SendFriend, Transpaygo, FTCS ,and Euro Exim Bank, would "leverage the digital asset XRP to source liquidity on-demand when sending payments on behalf of their customers" and that using XRP "for liquidity when sending a cross-border payment helps financial institutions avoid the hassle of pre-funding accounts in destination currencies" as well as allowing them "to make faster, lower cost payments than they can through the traditional correspondent banking system."
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