Blockchain solutions provider Ripple has joined the Digital Pound Foundation, a nonprofit focused on the creation and implementation of a digital pound in the United Kingdom, according to a Thursday (Oct. 14) press release. Susan Friedman, Ripple’s head of policy, will represent the company as a foundation member, per the announcement.
The California-based company’s participation in the foundation continues its collaboration with central banks globally on technical and policy issues related to central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).
Ripple, which was founded in 2012, views the U.K. as being on the forefront of growth in the crypto-asset space, and the development of a digital pound is the logical culmination, according to the release.
“We are excited to support the design and implementation of a digital pound in partnership with the Digital Pound Foundation,” Friedman noted. “The foundation will help advance the U.K.’s goal to build a more inclusive and sustainable financial system.”
As PYMNTS reported last month, the Bank of England has been looking into the possibility of launching a CBDC and has staffed two third-party working groups to provide insight. Group members include people who have worked in neobanks and payments, along with companies involved in crypto, such as PayPal, Monzo, Starling, Checkout.com, ConsenSys, R3, Visa and Mastercard. The engagement forum is tasked with gathering input on policies and functions of a CBDC, while the technology forum will assist the bank in understanding the complexities of designing, implementing and operating a digital currency.
CBDCs are being tried out more readily on a global scale. In Nigeria, the eNaira digital currency debuted on Oct. 1, as PYMNTS reported at the time.
Read more: CBDCs Can Cut Cross-Border Transaction Time
Interest in CBDCs has grown exponentially in the wake of the pandemic. A 2021 Bank of International Settlements poll of central banks determined that 86% of those surveyed are investigating the possibility of CBDCs, while 60% are trying out the technology and 14% are moving forward with trial projects.