Ripple’s Incubator Arm Xpring Invests in Wietse Wind’s Startup XRPL Labs

Siamak Masnavi

On Wednesday (February 13th), Ripple's incubator arm, Xpring, announced that it had invested in XRPL Labs, a startup co-founded by legendary Dutch developer Wietse Wind, who is famous in the XRP community for his highly innovative and useful contributions to the XRP ecosystem.

What is Xpring?

Xpring (pronounced “spring”), which was announced by Ripple on 14 May 2018, is an "initiative that builds infrastructure and helps innovative blockchain projects grow through investments and partnerships; it is "strongly focused on projects that build on and utilize XRP and the XRP Ledger." Xpring's objective is "to build a robust community of developers, entrepreneurs and companies who believe that blockchains, and the XRP Ledger in particular, will transform industries."

One of its main areas of interest is novel use cases for XRP as a payment mechanism, "such as micropayments, machine-to-machine payments, paid APIs and wallets."

What is XRPL Labs?

XRPL Labs is a startup created by Wietse Wind (@WietseWind) and two partners, Tristan (@ThisIsTRISS) and Ali (@baltazar223), in October 2018. All three had already separately developed interesting tools/applications powered by the XRP Ledger. Wind's most famous app is "XRP Tip Bot", a "bot that enables users on reddit, Twitter and Discord to send Ripple XRP to each other through reddit comments / tweets."

XRPL Labs plans to work on three projects over the next two years:

  • "Signing Platform (App): Interact with the XRP ledger from your smartphone (iOS / Android). Sign transactions and keep your XRP safe by allowing 3rd party applications to send Sign Requests to your mobile device. DEX and MultiSign support"
  • "Decentralized Exchange UI: View, create and cancel offers on the XRP ledger Decentralized Exchange. Trade XRP for IOU’s (and the other way around) from your browser."
  • "Cold Storage OS: 100% Air Gapped. Get yourself a cheap laptop and install our Linux-based XRPL Cold Storage OS. Store your keypairs and secrets, safe and encrypted, and compose and sign transactions offline and submit your transactions airgapped."

Why Xpring Decided to Invest in XRPL Labs

Xpring's director, Vanessa Pestritto, says that Xpring wanted to work with Wietse Wind not just because of his "excellent past experience," but also due to his understanding of "the protocols and technical details of both the XRP Ledger and Interledger Protocol."

Also, they appreciated his leadership role in the XRP community, where "he has dedicated personal time and resources to building projects and developer tools, contributing to the XRP Community Blog, and educating developers at local meetups."

Pestritto says this funding "will enable Wietse to dedicate more time and resources to his projects, which he will independently select."

Reaction From Wietse Wind

Here is how Wind expressed his feelings on Twitter:

And the XRP community, as a whole, seems extremely pleased. Here is one example tweet from a prominent member of the XRP community:

 

Featured Image Courtesy of Ripple

Coinbase Preparing for Stock Market Listing as Early as This Year: Report

San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase has reportedly started preparing for a stock market listing that could come as early as this year.

The move would make Coinbase the first major U.S.-based cryptocurrency exchange to go public, but the listing would require the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) blessing. According to Reuters, one source claimed the exchange is considering a direct listing instead of a traditional initial public offering (IPO).

While in an IPO new shares are created, underwritten and sold to the public, in a direct listing no new shares and created and only outstanding shares are sold, with no underwriters involved. Reuters quoted three people familiar with the matter, who requested anonymity because the listing preparations are reportedly confidential.

Coinbase has not yet registered its intention to go publish with the SEC, but has already reached out to investment banks and law firms. The cryptocurrency exchange was valued at $8 billion in its latest private fundraising round in 2018.

It was founded in 2012 and now has over 35 million users, allowing them to trade various cryptoassets both on its Coinbase platform and on the Coinbase Pro platform. It also has multiple other services, including Custody, Commerce, and Earn.

The San Francisco-based firm’s bitcoin holdings are estimated to now be over 1 million BTC, as users deposit funds on it over time. Last month Coinbase revealed it suffered outages after seeing its traffic spike significantly in a few minutes, as the price of most cryptocurrencies moved abruptly.

As CryptoGlobe reported, CryptoCompare’s June 2020 Exchange Review showed Coinbase was the third-largest top tier crypto exchange by trading volume in May, trading $6.86 billion worth of crypto throughout the month, falling behind OKEx and Binance.

Featured image via Unsplash.