SBI Remit and Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) have introduced the first commercially-available remittance service powered by Ripple, using the system to send money in JPY to a recipient’s SCB savings account in Thailand and receive funds in seconds.
Remittance flows between Japan and Thailand have been steadily growing and currently make up roughly $250 million USD annually. Yet, the remittance infrastructure hasn’t kept up with customer needs. Funds transfers can take up to two days, fees average a whopping 5-7% for each transaction, and there is no visibility into when funds actually arrive.
With the roll-out of instant bank-to-bank payments between the two markets, SBI and SCB believe they can create a new revenue opportunity estimated at $10-15 million per year.
Nobuo Ando representative director, SBI Remit comments: “It is our duty to continuously search for superior technological solutions to deliver ever improved remittance services for our customers. In this case, Ripple was impressive in concept and turned out to be more so in practice. Furthermore, we can expect to have more favorable foreign exchange opportunities as Ripple’s network expands. For this, we welcome more institutions to join and help us offer competitive remittance services over conventional methods to our valued customers.”
Over the long-term, he says, the service will also be available in SCB’s other key markets across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific.
Ripple announced a joint venture with Japanese financial conglomerate SBI Holdings in January early last year with the aim of driving the adoption of its distributed ledger technology across Asian markets.