Ripple added another bank to its blockchain network on Tuesday, continuing the rapid expansion of RippleNet.
BankDhofar, an Oman-based investment management company, announced on Tuesday that they would be joining RippleNet in an effort to enable global cross-border payments. This venture also allows the bank to test blockchain technology, which is rapidly being researched and implemented by other banks.
Dr. Tariq Taha, The Chief Information Officer at BankDhofar, made a statement regarding the partnership, saying:
“We are delighted to be the first bank in Oman to join RippleNet and access more than 100 of its member banks and other financial institutions utilizing blockchain for instant payments. With this, we can provide instant, frictionless and secure cross border money transfers within seconds, with end-to-end visibility over the journey of the payment”.
Joining RippleNet is the first step towards using one of the company’s technological offerings, which include xCurrent and xRapid. Ripple’s settlement systems are already being used by other financial institutions. Santander, a Spain-based bank, officially rolled out a cross border payment system using xCurrent, which utilizes the blockchain but not cryptocurrency. MoneyGram recently announced that they would be using Ripple’s xRapid, which uses the cryptocurrency XRP to move money.
Earlier this year, BankDhofar joined BankChain, a consortium of nearly 30 banks that helps banks find and utilize blockchain solutions to increase their efficiency. These moves are part of BankDhofar’s plan to become the leading bank in the Gulf region by incorporating newer technologies into its financial ecosystem.
Ripple has been adding a significant number of banks to its pilot programs over the past year. Brad Garlinghouse, Ripple’s CEO, recently stated at a conference that the company plans on having half of the world banks on RippleNet in the next several years. Whether more of these banks choose to utilize their xCurrent and xRapid offerings remains to be seen.