RIPPLE Abu Dhabi: First Middle East Bank to Use Ripple for Cross-Border Payments

According to an announcement published Friday on Ripple’s blog, the UAE’s largest lender, the National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD), has become the first bank in the Middle East to partner with Ripple. Through integrating Ripple’s technology, NBAD can now offer intrabank transfers and real-time cross-border payments to its customers.

today, we’re proud to announce that The National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) has become the first bank in the Middle East to use Ripple’s solution to provide real-time cross-border payments to its customers.


Ramana Kumar, Managing Director and Head of Business and Product Management at Global Transaction Banking (GTB), appreciates the potential of blockchain technology as a way to offer efficient and transparent banking solutions:

Through Ripple, NBAD customers have an efficient, secure and reliable channel to make immediate international remittances and payments between regional markets. Applied to NBAD’s already innovative remittance infrastructure, the Ripple solution offers customers end-to-end visibility of transactions and allow for the instant transfer of funds to a beneficiary in a cost-effective manner.

Ramana Kumar, Managing Director & Head of GTB Business and Product Management, said: “At NBAD we strive to ensure our offerings are efficient and transparent. Blockchain technology transforms and paves a new way in achieving our goals and better serve our customers, adding value through accessibility and transparency. As an initial adopter and first bank to go live on Ripple, NBAD offers innovative solutions to our clients payments needs.”

By integrating Ripple’s solution throughout its network, NBAD is able to offer its customers an efficient and reliable source for instant transfer of funds to a beneficiary in a cost-effective manner.


In addition to speed and transparency, another crucial benefit of blockchain integration is its inherent security. The security of banking customers’ personal and financial data is of paramount importance. Blockchain implementation in a financial institution like NBAD is a major leap forward in the protection of customer information and transactions. It eliminates the need for intermediary banks to facilitate transfers while being able to operate in parallel to the existing SWIFT system.


The potential benefit to NBAD’s customers is clear. According to the 2016 World Bank Migration and Remittances Factbook, the UAE is ranked as the fourth top remittance-sending country in the world, accounting for more than $19 billion. NBAD and other banks in popular remittance corridors that partner with Ripple can offer their customers more cost-effective cross-border payments services, while saving on operational costs at the same time.

Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse added, “Banks and their customers have been hearing about the promise of blockchain technology to enable real-time cross-border payments. Now, some of the most innovative and successful banks like NBAD are making this a reality by offering Ripple-enabled payments to their entire customer base, and in doing so, paving the way to make 2017 the year we see broad commercialization of blockchain take hold globally.”

The issue of security was a significant one to this particular partnership. We are seeing a global shift in how financial institutions approach the protection of their data. NBAD’s introduction of Ripple to the region represents a crucial step forward in the protection of customer information and transactions by eliminating the requirement of using intermediary banks for transfers, and operates in parallel to the SWIFT system.

Although NBAD is the first bank in its region to serve its customers using Ripple’s technology, the bank joins a growing list of financial institutions around the world to do so, including Santander, Standard Chartered, and UniCredit.



Despite the recent downturn in the cryptocurrency market, the adoption of Ripple’s payment solutions continues to increase. In December alone, Ripple announced several important partnerships and projects:

  • The Japan Bank Consortium – a coalition of Japanese banks organized by SBI Ripple Asia – announced the launch of a new Ripple pilot with two of South Korea’s largest banks.
  • Krungsri (Bank of Ayudhya PCL), one of the largest banks in Thailand, teamed up with Ripple to “remove the friction” from cross-border payments.

That momentum has carried into 2018 with the announcement that MoneyGram would be implementing XRP and Ripple’s xRapid solution to provide on-demand liquidity.

At press time, Ripple (XRP) was trading at around $0.93, a gain of over 19% since the same time the previous day.