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Understanding Ripple

Ripple is a fintech company dedicated to providing an open-source platform that enables developers and entrepreneurs to build realistic payment solutions. The company manages different subsidiaries to further its mission of promoting financial inclusion. Ripple envisions enabling a world where value moves as seamlessly as information flows today—a concept they term the “Internet of Value”.

The Founding of Ripple

Ripple was first conceived in 2004 by Ryan Fugger, who aimed to create a secure money transfer system via a digital registry, bypassing traditional banks. This system was called RipplePay. Although visionary for its time, the system lacked sufficient security measures for mass adoption.

The Distinction Between Ripple and XRP

Ripple and XRP are two separate entities. Ripple is a fintech company that offers software products to financial institutions, while XRP is a cryptocurrency used in some Ripple products. According to Ripple’s official website, XRP is an open-source, decentralized digital asset built for payments.

The Development of a Decentralized Financial Payment System

In 2011, successful entrepreneur Jed McCaleb joined Ryan Fugger at Ripple. Together, they developed a decentralized money exchange system. At the time, Bitcoin already existed, but the concept of cheap, person-to-person micro-payments was still novel. Their vision was to transform the financial world into an Internet of Value.

Acquisition, Renaming, and Major Events in Ripple’s History

In 2012, Jed McCaleb and Chris Larsen acquired Ripple from Ryan Fugger. They renamed the company “OpenCoin” and decided to collaborate with banks to enhance their transaction systems. However, following McCaleb’s departure in 2013, OpenCoin was rebranded as Ripple Labs, and later simplified to Ripple in 2015.

Ripple’s Evolution and Milestones

In 2015, Ripple’s Stefan Thomas and Evan Schwartz designed the interledger to offer a straightforward payment solution. The same year, Ripple started reaching out to institutions with the goal to revolutionize cross-border payments, traditionally managed by SWIFT, by providing faster, cheaper, and more secure transactions.

In 2020, Ripple joined the ISO 20022, the global standard for cross-border payments. However, later that year, Ripple faced legal action from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regarding the status of XRP as a security.