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Fidor AG is First Bank to Deploy Ripple Protocol

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We don’t know who reported the news first, but Finovate was glad to be among the few who figured out late last week that Fidor Bank AG was using Ripple to move money in three different countries. 

And once we were able to track down the source of this exciting development in the world of alternative payments, we couldn’t wait to share it.

Today we get further confirmation as Ripple announces that Germany’s Fidor Bank is indeed the first bank to adopt the Ripple protocol. Ripple Labs CEO Chris Larsen celebrated the occasion by emphasizing the benefits of his technology, chiefly its ability to provide “real-time settlement in any currency … at highly competitive rates” anywhere in the world.

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Fidor will use Ripple in a number of ways, including inter- and intrabank payments between other financial institutions and its own branches. The Ripple integration will also allow the bank to offer its customers faster and less expensive money transfer options.
It will be interesting to see how much Fidor’s deployment of Ripple influences other financial institutions to pursue similar alternatives. In nothing Fidor’s adoption of Ripple in a panel discussion at the Finextra Future Money conference last week, the Anthemis Group’s Udayan Goyal did so in the context of saying that “Swift will be gone in 3 years.” He tweeted later:

SWIFT, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, is the leading provider of international interbank messaging. 
Developed by Ripple Labs, Ripple is an open-source, distributed payment protocol. The system allows anyone to transmit value anywhere in the world, securely and in real-time. Virtually free transactions and the lack of chargebacks make the technology attractive to merchants. And consumers can take advantage of the flexibility of Ripple to support everything from real and virtual currencies to non-currency value such as frequent flier miles and mobile minutes.
Ripple Labs won Silver in the “Best New Technology” category at the Innovation Awards this year, and has raised $9 million in funding. A Finovate alum, the company demoed its Ripple protocol at FinovateSpring 2013 in San Francisco.