In an apparent snub to Ripple, Thailand’s oldest bank, Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) is set to open a new cross border remittances corridor in partnership with Lightnet, a fintech company that uses the Stellar blockchain. SCB says the partnership opens the door for more efficient cross border funds transfer from South Korea to Thailand.
Before choosing Lightnet, SCB teamed up with Ripple’s partner Azimo in April to open a payment corridor between Thailand and Europe by using the Ripplenet.
However, in announcing the new partnership, an executive with SCB lauds the new service model saying it “will increase its service capabilities while improving transaction speeds under a secure environment.” In addition, the service will be offered “at a lower cost, (therefore) helping satisfy fast-rising demands for better international fund transfers.”
The bank’s vice president Srihanath Lamsam adds:
We expect that this new service model will help raise the service experience bar for seamless cross-border transfers for our customers and serve the growing demand for better cross-border remittances.
Meanwhile, SCB is not explaining why it has partnered with Lightnet ahead of long term partner Azimo for this particular corridor. Still, the bank hints in the statement that this cooperation will allow the bank “to extend the scope of its international fund transfer services.”
SCB’s choice of Lightnet, which wants to make SWIFT and Western Union obsolete, suggests that Stellar might be winning the battle with Ripple in Thailand, one of the biggest global remittances market. Both Stellar and Ripple aim to make cross border payments more efficient and both appear to target the same markets although the latter has focused on partnering with financial institutions.
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