Standard Chartered has completed a pilot US$500 cross-border business payment on a distributed ledger.
The bank and “a large correspondent bank” whose name StanChart would not disclose, exchanged payment messages and obligations to settle the payment over the Ripple Consensus Ledger network. “A payment message of US$500 equivalent was successfully sent from Singapore via the Ripple network in seconds,” a spokesperson tells GTR.
This is at least the fourth such pilot payment performed on the Ripple network, after Canada’s ATB Financial Bank sent €666.67 to Germany’s ReiseBank in 20 seconds in June and National Australia Bank (NAB) transferred A$10 to Canada’s CIBC in 10 seconds later in the year.
Santander was the first bank to pilot external payments on Ripple back in May 2016.
Cross-border funds transfers typically take up to two days to complete outside of the blockchain.
The Standard Chartered pilot was conducted in August 2016 but announced this week as part of the Sibos conference, and the bank is working towards commercialising the system, though there have been no updates on the timeline as of yet.
It forms part of Standard Chartered’s ‘Banking the ecosystem’ strategy, launched last week.
Ripple CEO & co-founder Chris Larsen says: “This marks a major step towards real-time financial settlement. Together we’re building the foundation for the seamless flow of value and new business opportunities that haven’t previously been possible.”
Alex Manson, global head of transaction banking at Standard Chartered, adds: “This initiative is an integral part of our digitisation agenda in the area of distributed ledger technology as we continue to explore new ways of adding value to our clients and the industry.
“Digitisation is a priority for the bank to better serve our clients by connecting business communities in a more efficient way. Payments innovation is a key area of focus in order to bank our clients’ ecosystem and make it more cohesive, reduce risk and increase transparency.”
Ripple’s blockchain payment software is already being used by 10 banks, and over 30 banks have completed pilot projects.
Earlier this month, Standard Chartered announced that it was part of a group of five investors that got involved in Ripple’s US$55mn series B fundraising round. Other investors were consultancy Accenture, SCB Digital Ventures (the venture arm of Siam Commercial Bank), Santander Innoventures and CME Group.