Ripple's Singapore arm recently secured a license as a major payments institution from the country's monetary authority.
The state of crypto is presented by Tron connecting the world to the power of Cryptocurrency. Ripple's Singapore arm recently secured a license as a major payments institution from the country's monetary Authority. Joining us now to discuss is Ripple's senior Vice President of Strategic Initiatives, Eric Van Miltenberg, welcome Eric. Hi, Lawrence Michael. Uh Pleasure to be here. Thanks for having me. Congratulations on this license. Can you unpack this unique significance of it for us, please? Yeah, absolutely. Um As you mentioned this major payments uh institution license that we uh received just a week ago. It was really, it is a big step. Um You know, we've been through this process for a while now. Uh several institutions uh did not receive the license. And so we're proud and excited about reaching that milestone. I mean, really the significance is that, that, that we recognize Singapore as a significant hub for our business and frankly, for crypto overall in Asia pack, uh You know, I have to tip of the hat to the MA S for finding a balance between encouraging innovation and also protecting users, right? Um I think they, they really are at the forefront compared to some of the other jurisdictions around the world and providing regulatory clarity, which is absolutely essential for companies like ripple and other projects on the Blockchain to feel comfortable about investing and, and knowing that that there's guardrails and clarity that allows them to operate. So, um we have invested in Singapore and the region for years now. We opened our office there in uh I believe it was uh I think it was 2017, we have 50 employees there and we're excited about doubling down in the region and, and uh this license obviously is a great step in that direction. Uh It's a welcome change to be, you know, talking to ripple about like, you know, developments beyond the sort of uh ever long running, you know, sec lawsuit. Let me just ask you though, like has that and you know, how long it dragged on for perhaps the uncertainty associated with that? How has it affected your capacity to get licenses outside of the United States such as in Singapore and else and other places? And, and what is the outlook for that now that it seems like there's been some rulings in your favor? Yeah, I mean, the fact that the judge several, several months ago ruled that in fact XRP in and of itself is not a security, you know, helped to create a little bit of clarity. I think there's still a long way to go in the US in terms of providing regulatory clarity, but frankly, ripple's business has been thriving um regardless in some ways we've been operating. Um you know, even as if we lost the suit, which of course we didn't. Um And outside of the US in regions like Asia Pacific in the Middle East, in, in the EU in the UK, uh you know, we continue to press our, our, our advantage and move forward with our, our um our services. So we're seeing great growth, we're seeing adoption by financial institutions and corporations alike. So I think this is the, the, the, you know, the milestone in Singapore is a great move forward. Uh The, the more clarity we get with the case that that certainly helps, provides a little bit of tailwind. So we're excited, we're in a great position and we're, we're looking forward to um to the future so that future of course, is gonna involve a different CFO from, from my understanding. Uh There's, there's been some c suite changes uh has a replacement CFO been found. Why did the, the previous CFO leave? And uh how are they, how are they finding if they haven't found the CFO? Where, where are they, you know, who are the top contenders? Of course, that, that don't know if that's uh something you're talking here. Yeah, I mean, ii I really can't comment too much about that. Um You know, our past CFO, Christina Campbell was fantastic. Uh She's, she's served us well over the past several years and we wish her nothing but the best. Um, yeah, it's an industry where there's transitions, there's really no, no drama here. Um, you know, these things happen. And so, yeah, we're in the process of, of, um, securing that next CFO uh, certainly a company like ripple with, uh, our market position and the prospects for the future is a, is a pretty interesting place to work. And so, you know, that process will move forward, um you know, quickly over the next several months. So uh oh Michael, go ahead. No, just, just, just generally, you know, how is ripple navigating this crypto winter? It just seems to be dragging on and on. I mean, what, what is your strategy for, for grappling with the uncertainty that's associated with that? I think we continue to be focused on what we've been focused on before. I mean, again, Ripple is not a company that that lives and dies on the price of crypto day to day. You know, we um from the beginning have, you know, put forward a solution that is trying to solve a real world problem. Um Our, our core technology is really about helping enterprises um leverage the power of Blockchain and crypto to, you know, address value movement. You know, our, our, our mission is really to help enable the internet of value. We think it's, it's sort of incredible that in 2023. It's so, so difficult to move value around the world. And we're, we're more than confident that Blockchain technology is a game changer when it comes to that. So, um we continue to prosecute the, the opportunity that's in front of us. Our customers are not, you know, coming to us just because we're a crypto company, they're coming to us because we've been able to leverage the power of, of crypto in a compliant way and apply it such that it addresses pain points that they're experiencing in, in money movement. Our core product is as you might know, is around cross border um um money movement. And uh again, we work with payment prior around the world. So, so really, that hasn't gone through a winter per se that, that, that movement of value is a problem that persists and doesn't necessarily ebb and flow with the ups and downs of the crypto market. So, yeah, we uh we've been fortunate, our business continues to, to, to move up into the right. And certainly we care about the broader crypto landscape and, and we keep our eye on it, but it's nothing that necessarily um you know, kind of dominates our uh our thinking day to day. So whenever you aware, you're obviously sort of looking to uh advance this notion of the power of Blockchain is the ripple University Blockchain research initiative. Can you tell us a little bit about that? Yeah. Um The, the, the the University of Black Chain Research Initiative, Uri as we call it is a program that we started um in about five years ago. And you know, really the impetus to that program was we, we recognize that this technology is indeed a game changer. It's going to be super important that, that people broadly understand the power and the real world use cases that, that it can help to address. So, yeah, we started out in 2018. Um we formed an alliance of it was 17 universities in 12 countries around the world. Really to, to help support them in promoting the understanding of Blockchain technology that could range from creating new courses, um hosting meet ups seminars, doing academic research, providing funding for fellowships and scholarships. And, you know, we're thrilled with the results. We're, we're five years in that, that um universe of um institutions around the world is now 50 50 schools in, in um uh something like 24 countries around the world are working to, you know, really help advance the understanding of Blockchain when we've seen this historically, if you think about other technologies, be it the internet, even semiconductors, machine learning A I. Um it's academia that oftentimes helps move it into the forefront in the public eye and make sure people understand its power and why it's a good thing. So we've been thrilled with the partnerships with universities around the world. Um and the results which I'm happy to get into, kind of speak for themselves. So, yeah, it's a, it's a great program, um, and something that we look to, you know, continue to invest in and partner with the universities in the years ahead.