Ripple seeing ‘good progress’ in SEC case over XRP, outcome expected next year

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  • CEO Brad Garlinghouse said that Ripple is making “good progress” in its legal dispute with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
  • Garlinghouse expects the case to reach a conclusion next year.
  • The SEC alleges that Ripple and its executives sold $1.3 billion worth of cryptocurrency XRP in an unregistered securities offering.

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Fintech company Ripple is making great progress in its legal feud with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, CEO Brad Garlinghouse told Businesshala on Monday.

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Garlinghouse said he expects the case, which focuses on XRP, the world’s seventh-largest cryptocurrency, to come to a conclusion next year.

“We’re seeing great progress despite the slow judicial process,” he told Businesshala’s Dan Murphy.

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“Obviously we are seeing good questions being asked by the judge. And I think the judge knows this is not just about Ripple, it will have a huge impact.”

Garlinghouse said he expects to close next year.

Ripple, which is based in San Francisco, generated much buzz during the crypto frenzy of late 2017 and 2018, which saw the prices of bitcoin, ether and other cryptocurrencies hit record highs.

XRP, a token closely associated with Ripple, benefited from that rally, reaching an all-time high above $3. It has fallen dramatically from that price since then, but is riding the latest crypto wave with gains of more than 370% year-on-year

Ripple’s technology is designed to allow banks and other financial services firms to send money across borders faster and at a lower cost. The company also markets another product that uses XRP for cross-border payments called On-Demand Liquidity.

The SEC is concerned about Ripple’s relationship with XRP, accusing the company and its executives of selling $1.3 billion worth of tokens in an unregistered securities offering. But Ripple argues that XRP should not be considered a security, a classification that would bring it under more regulatory scrutiny.

It comes as regulators around the world are taking a closer look at crypto, a market that is still largely unregulated but has boomed over the past year.

Garlinghouse said the United Arab Emirates, Japan, Singapore and Switzerland are examples of countries that show “leadership” in regulating crypto, while China and India have cracked down on the industry.

“In general, the direction of travel is very positive,” Garlinghouse said.

Brady Dougan, former CEO of Credit Suisse, said that regulation in crypto is an important area that is likely to evolve over time.

“This is a market that is early in its development,” Dougan, who now runs the fintech firm Axos, told Businesshala. “I think it’s a healthy market and it’s one that will continue to grow in a positive way.”

Ripple, a privately owned company, was last valued at $10 billion and counts the likes of Alphabet’s venture capital arm GV, Andreessen Horowitz and Japan’s SBI Holdings as investors.

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