Ever since Ripple officially launched xRapid (currently known as On-Demand Liquidity – ODL) in October 2018, all eyes have been focused on its progress. ODL, Ripple’s product that uses XRP to source liquidity to avoid pre-funding accounts, allows financial institutions to free up the capital held in nostro and vostro accounts.
The early days
Within one year of releasing ODL, Ripple announced at its annual Swell event that two dozen customers had already signed to use the product. Some of the customers included: MoneyGram, goLance, Viamericas, FlashFX, Interbank Peru, Catalyst Corporate Federal Credit Union, Cuallix, Euro Exim Bank, FTCS (now Intergiro), IDT, JNFX, MercuryFX, Sendfriend, Transpaygo, SADAD, TransferGO, Instarem (now Nium), Beetech, with Intermex and Azimo being the most recent additions to the list.
For ODL to work, exchanges are a necessary cog of the machine. That is why Ripple partnered with a few exchanges to facilitate ODL trades. Some of the exchanges included Bittrex (United States dollar), Bitso (Mexican peso), Bitstamp (Euro, United States dollar), coins.ph (Philippine peso) and BTC Markets (Australian dollar).
Slowly but steadily volume started to flow between these exchanges and solutions like Utility-scan began monitoring these ODL trades.
The main focus of Ripple’s ODL has been the US dollar, the Mexican peso, the Philippine peso, the Euro and the Australian dollar.
More currencies coming up
With ODL gaining traction in the initial corridors used, Ripple’s intentions to add additional currencies to create more corridors is no secret.
British Poung sterling (GBP)
It was a few weeks ago that Ripple ODL partner exchange Bitstamp added GBP trading to its platform. With Bitstamp already being used for USD and EUR, it was a matter of time before it would be used for GBP.
As soon as Utility-scan began picking up on GBP ODL volume, the XRPcommunity was quick to do some digging to find out which company was using it. It was Mourad Toumi, Utility-scan’s founder that revealed that Azimo, an online international money transfer company, was the one using ODL in the GBP-PHP corridor.
razilian Real (BRL)
It was known since Swell 2019, Ripple’s annual event that took place in Singapore in November, that Ripple was planning to expand ODL to Brazil soon. Marjan Delatinne, Ripple’s Global Head of Banking recently revealed that ODL was coming to Brazil very soon.
Ripple met with the Central Bank of Brazil two weeks ago to address “institutional matters” while Banco Rendimento, one of the first Brazilian banks on RippleNet, announced the use of RippleNet Cloud on June 10th.
Japanese yen (JPY)
Back in December 2019, it was revealed that Flash FX (Ripple ODL partner in Australia) was planning to expand the ODL service to Japan, with FXcoin announcing in April its intention to test remittances with XRP.
Thai baht (THB)
As mentioned earlier, crypto-asset exchanges are a vital part of the ODL process. If there is an ODL exchange for a specific currency, it means ODL is near. This is the case for Thailand. In mid-January 2020 it was revealed that Bitkub was Ripple’s ODL partner exchange in Thailand. A few months later, Utility-scan started to pick-up ODL transactions from Thailand.
Change in strategy
A week ago, Asheesh Birla, Ripple’s SVP of Product and Corporate Development, announced a change of emphasis for ODL, from large treasury payments to individual, low-value transactions, addressing the growing need in remittances and SME payments.
Brad Garlinghouse (Ripple’s CEO) recently explained in his Q1 2020 Virtual All-Hands Meeting remarks that Ripple was focused on making the right decisions and we believe one of the decisions was this change. At the same time, a few days prior to the announcement, Asheesh Birla wrote an article on Forkast news, explaining the importance of distribution strategies. This sentence summarizes the article pretty well:
“The key to any great product is getting it in the hands of your audience.”
ODL and XRP are great products and obviously Ripple believes that the best way to get it in the hands of the audience is by using it for low-value transactions. Ripple is so determined that this is the right strategy that it is willing to significantly drop ODL volumes to make the change.
With new corridors slowly getting activated and the new strategy being implemented, it is a matter of time until ODL picks up where it left off and continue making new all time highs.