The Saudi British Bank (SABB) is a Riyadh-based Saudi joint stock company in which British banking firm HSBC Holdings PLC owns a minority stake.
On October 23rd, Navin Gupta, Ripple’s Managing Director in the South Asia and MENA region, tweeted that Ripple was working with SABB on
building the future of payments together.
Since then, no update or official announcement has been posted on this collaboration, until @BankXRP (twitter handle), unearthed a report published by HSBC on the 22nd of January, 2019.
According to the report, titled: “Blazing a transformation trail: Saudi Arabia’s new digital frontier”, ” SABB is one of the three banks approved by the central bank to test connections with Ripple for instant settlement of crossborder transfers using blockchain technology”. This statement comes from Ghada Al Jarbou, the Head of Global Liquidity and Cash Management of SABB. Moreover, she added that SABB has just gone live in the end of December, 2018,
The other two institutions working with Ripple is the National Commercial Bank of Saudi Arabia (NCB) along with Al Rajhi Bank (ARB). We should also not forget that the national bank of Saudi Arabia, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) has signed an agreement with Ripple and SADAD, a payment system launched by SAMA that operates as
the national Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment (EBPP) service provider for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), will be using xRapid.
It is obvious that this region is becoming more “Ripple friendly” as time goes by and institutions are starting to see its benefits. It remains to be seen however if the country’s stance on cryptocurrencies changes and XRP becomes available for trading with the Saudi riyal (SAR).