Santander Bank first in the UK has released a blockchain application built on Ripple to let its customers transfer money internationally within a working day.

“The need for finance has evolved from providing a physical Pound in your pocket or card in your purse, where you pay at a till, to being seamlessly integrated into a new, always on, connected lifestyle… At Santander we work hard to ensure our banking is simple, personal and fair and believe new Blockchain technology will play a transformational role in the way we achieve our goals and better serve our customers, adding value by creating more choice and convenience,” International Business Times quotes Sigga Sigurdardottir, head of Santander’s Customer and Innovation.

The app is available for payments between 21 countries in sums equaling £10 to £10,000 in GBP, EUR, and USD. For the time being, US dollars can only be sent to the United States. The bank plans to extend the possibilities soon, enabling its consumers to transfer larger sums and diversify the currencies supported.

The application is fully compatible with Apple Pay.

“Ripple is redefining the way that value moves around the world, and today we're already enabling real-time, affordable international settlement between banks who have adopted our solutions. As an early adopter and pioneer in the banking industry, Santander is the first bank in the world to transfer real funds externally. In doing so, they are creating a new, exemplary standard of service,” said Ripple’s chief executive officer Chris Larsen.

In June 2015, the Santander’s Group fund Santander InnoVentures published a report suggesting that blockchain technology could save banks up to $15-20 billion per year by reducing infrastructure costs associated with cross-border payments, securities trading and regulatory compliance.

In October 2015, Santander InnoVentures invested $4 mln into Ripple, announcing its working on a proof-of-concept based on Ripple's international payments technology which has finally gone live.

Maria Rudina