Bank of America, the second largest bank in the U.S., has tested the Ripple blockchain and may have future plans for the technology. The project was kept confidential, only revealing that Bank of America was part of the Ripple Global Payments Coordination Group.
Ripple’s spokesman declined to provide details about the pilot, and Bank of America declined to comment.
“Bank of America was part of the 2016 Ripple Global Payments Coordination Group and I piloted them,”
was all that Ripple’s spokesman said.
Solution based on decentralized technology
The bank is a member of the steering group that recommends rules and standards for Ripplenet, a network dedicated to financial institutions. Bank representatives said earlier that they have no plans to develop blockchain technology. Apparently, Bank of America’s blockchain patent portfolio exists only to allow for a change in strategy if needed.
However, earlier this month, the bank posted a job announcement for a product manager who will lead the team for a “Ripple project.”
The project has been described as “a solution based on decentralized technology for cross-border payments marketed to GTS customers.” GTS represents global transaction services, a division of Bank of America that works with the treasury departments of large companies and financial institutions.
Pilot project based on xCurrent
In December 2018, Ripple’s head of development for the Asia-Pacific region delivered a presentation at a seminar convened by the IMF.
The presentation section dedicated to Ripple’s xCurrent service included a slide entitled “An Image of Our Customers.” The Bank of America Merrill Lynch logo appears alongside 15 other financial institutions around the globe.
The presentation was later published on IMF.org and recently circulated on Twitter. xCurrent, the service that Bank of America seems to have tested, does not involve XRP cryptocurrency.
Customers of the xCurrent payment system include American Express, Santander and PNC.
In August, Spanish banking giant Santander revealed that xCurrent will allow the first international online transfers to the US for some of its Latin American customers using Ripple products.