To readers who have been following the ongoing saga that is, Ripple Labs, and especially to those who caught the recently published “Ripple Special Report” in the Q Wealth Members Area, it will come as something of a relief to hear some good news from and for Ripple, for a change.
Ripple Labs seems to have shaken off its recent ground-breaking legal challenges and penalties, and has just announced that it has received its latest round of “Series A” venture capital funding.
Only a few hours ago, MarketWatch.com and others, published the following press release from Ripple Labs, carrying the headline …
“Ripple Labs Closes $28 Million Series A Funding Round”
SAN FRANCISCO, CA, May 19, 2015 (Marketwired via COMTEX) –
Ripple Labs, the global leader in distributed payments technology and supporters of the Ripple protocol, today announced that it closed a $28 million Series A funding round that includes IDG Capital Partners, and the venture arms of CME Group and global data storage company Seagate Technology.
Other new investors include Jerry Yang’s AME Cloud Ventures, ChinaRock Capital Management, China Growth Capital, and Wicklow Capital, the investment vehicle for Dan Tierney and Stephen Schuler, co-founders of GETCO (now KCG).
This mix of traditional venture funds and strategic investors supports the vision for Ripple to enable an Internet of Value (IoV) by powering the real-time, secure settlement of funds for banks and multi-national companies worldwide. Specifically, these investors reflect Ripple Labs’ focus on not only banking, but also market making and new corporate treasury use cases around the globe.
“Our mission is to modernize decades-old payments infrastructure with IP-based technology so value moves around the world as freely, easily, securely and transparently as information on the web today,” said Ripple Labs CEO and co-founder Chris Larsen.
“Financial institutions, market makers and corporations are laying the foundation for this “Internet of Value”, contributing and providing liquidity for global payments. With investors like CME Group and Seagate joining the fold, we’re well positioned to accelerate adoption amongst these key customers.”
“Managing a global treasury operation and supply chain finances for one of the world’s largest high-tech storage technology companies, puts us in a unique position to understand the frictions and pain points in funds transfer,” said Dave Morton, Senior Vice President, Finance and Treasury at Seagate Technology.
“With its real-time settlement capabilities, we recognize the opportunity for Ripple to reduce money transfer costs, create transparency, and increase working capital in corporate treasury use cases. Banking and corporate applications are just the tip of the iceberg for a technology like Ripple, and we’re excited to support the team’s pursuit of those opportunities.”
“Ripple is transforming global settlement architecture, and its momentum in payments will give way to an expanding portfolio of use cases in the financial markets,” said Rumi Morales, Executive Director, Strategic Investment Group at CME Group, the world’s leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace.
“Joining this funding round is another example of how we are investing in technologies that impact our industry.”
This fund-raising round will help Ripple Labs continue to grow its presence internationally. Building on early traction in Europe and the U.S. with Earthport, Fidor Bank, Cross River Bank, and CBW Bank, announcing Ripple integrations, key Chinese investors with deep, local expertise in fintech and market making will help Ripple Labs drive Ripple adoption in Asia.
Li Feng, partner at IDG Capital Partners, early investors in Baidu, Tencent, Xiaomi and CreditEase, will also join the Ripple Labs Board of Directors.
“We are excited to build on our relationship with Ripple Labs, especially as they expand their presence in Asia,” said Feng.
“Growing their influence in key regions like Asia, will help activate new markets, further accelerating the use of Ripple as a real-time settlement protocol by the world’s leading financial institutions.”
Additional investors participating in this round are Bitcoin Opportunity Corp., Core Innovation Capital, Route 66 Ventures, RRE Ventures, Vast Ventures, and Venture 51.
Ripple Labs technology, like the BitCoin blockchain itself, is simply too important and ground breaking to be lost in this struggle.
The technology is going nowhere. Even the U.S. Nasdaq exchange is now involved.
But the huge question that still remains to be resolved obviously, is “How “free” can the technology remain.”
The final answer to that question of course, still waits for the pages of history to be written.
Kris Karlsson – The Q Wealth Team