On 10 October 2023, Eric van Miltenburg, the Senior Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at Ripple, appeared on CoinDesk TV to discuss a range of topics, including Ripple’s recent license acquisition in Singapore, the state of U.S. crypto regulations, and the future of blockchain research.
Singapore as a Crypto Hub
Van Miltenburg highlighted that Ripple recently secured a license as a major payments institution from Singapore’s Monetary Authority. This license is a significant milestone for the company, as it reinforces Singapore’s role as a crucial hub for Ripple and the broader crypto ecosystem in the Asia-Pacific region. The executive praised the Monetary Authority of Singapore for striking a balance between fostering innovation and ensuring user protection. He said that Ripple has been investing in the Singapore market for years, having opened an office there in 2017 with 50 employees, and added that the new license would enable the company to expand its operations in the region further.
U.S. Regulatory Landscape
When asked about Ripple’s ongoing lawsuit with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), van Miltenburg noted that Judge Torres had ruled back in July that XRP is not by itself a security, thereby providing some regulatory clarity. However, he emphasized that there is still much work to be done in the U.S. to offer clear guidelines for crypto companies. Despite the legal challenges, Ripple’s business has apparently been flourishing, especially in regions like Asia-Pacific, the Middle East, the EU, and the UK.
Ripple’s Growth and Strategy
Van Miltenburg stated that Ripple’s business has been growing steadily, irrespective of the lawsuit. He mentioned that the company has been focusing on solving real-world problems by helping enterprises leverage blockchain and crypto technologies. Furthermore, he noted that Ripple’s core product revolves around cross-border money movement, and it continues to see adoption from financial institutions and corporations alike.
On the topic of recent changes in Ripple’s executive team, van Miltenburg chose not to comment extensively. He did mention that their former CFO, Christina Campbell, had served the company well and that they are in the process of finding a new CFO.
Navigating the Crypto Winter
Addressing the prolonged downturn in the crypto market, van Miltenburg said that Ripple’s business model does not depend on daily crypto prices. The company remains focused on its mission to enable the “Internet of Value” by making it easier to move value around the world through blockchain technology.
University Blockchain Research Initiative (UBRI)
Lastly, van Miltenburg discussed Ripple’s University Blockchain Research Initiative (UBRI), which was started about five years ago. The program aims to promote the understanding of blockchain technology through academic research, courses, and seminars. Initially partnering with 17 universities in 12 countries, the initiative has now expanded to 50 schools in 24 countries.
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