American Express and Santander UK have partnered with financial technology company Ripple to offer cross-border payments between the US and the UK by using blockchain technology.
Payments made by American Express' business customers on its FX International Payments (FXIP) platform will now be routed via Ripple's enterprise blockchain network, RippleNet.
Santander UK has been selected as a partner to start a new transaction channel. American Express expects that the new channel will expand substantially in the near future.
American Express executive vice president and chief information officer Marc Gordon said: “American Express has a long history of integrating new technologies into innovative products and services that differentiate and enhance the customer experience.
“This collaboration with Ripple and Santander represents the next step forward on our blockchain journey, evolving the way we move money around the world.”
When compared with traditional payment processes, blockchain-enabled payments are claimed to improve international transaction by simplifying connections with intermediaries and by offering immediate end-to-end visibility into the status and cost of transactions.
Ripple will initially connect customers from both American Express and Santander UK by providing instant, trackable, cross-border payments. Ripple’s RippleNet system will help with remittances from customers of American Express to reach UK banks faster than ever before.
Ripple’s payments network also has the capability to allow American Express to connect with customers across the globe.
Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse said: “We're taking a huge step forward with American Express and Santander in solving the problems corporate customers experience with global payments.
“Transfers that used to take days will be completed in real-time, allowing money to move as fast as business today. It is just the beginning, and we look forward to growing this partnership to help other American Express FXIP customers.”
Image: American Express Company Building at 65 Broadway. Photo: Courtesy of Beyond My Ken/Wikipedia.