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Ripple Targets Entrepreneurs With New Xpring Initiative To Expand XRP Usage

San Francisco-based Ripple – the company behind the cryptocurrency XRP – has announced Xpring, an investment initiative which will provide funding to startups that agree to use XRP and the XRP Ledger.

In an announcement on the official website, Ripple explains Xpring (pronounced ‘Spring’) as follows:

“Xpring is a new initiative by Ripple that will invest in, incubate, acquire and provide grants to companies and projects run by proven entrepreneurs. Every entrepreneur will use the digital asset XRP and the XRP Ledger, the open-sourced, decentralized technology behind XRP, to solve their customers’ problems in a transformative way.”

The Xpring initiative marks an attempt by Ripple to expand its reach and focus beyond the banking and payments space which it has, so far, been focused on (although the actual extent of the pervasiveness and adoption of Ripple and XRP as a remittance network and digital currency has been questioned by some).

With Xpring, Ripple is looking to build an ecosystem around XRP and facilitate companies in using the cryptocurrency in different, varied ways. While Xpring will be geared toward helping “entrepreneurs looking to solve problems across identity, trade finance, gaming and virtual goods, provenance, real estate, insurance, digital media and many other industries”, Ripple, in the meantime, will continue to focus on financial institutions and the global payments sphere.

In addition to outlining the new initiative, Ripple also announced the appointment of Ethan Beard (former Director of the Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) Developer Network) as senior VP in charge of leading both Xpring and Ripple’s developer program.

Alluding to his time at Facebook, Beard stated that he enjoys “helping startups leverage new technologies and developments to grow”, and saw many companies (from industries such as news, music and gaming) who used the social media platform go on to see tremendous growth and success.

“Blockchain and digital assets have the ability to solve important problems and XRP – with its speed, scalability and demonstrated real-world use case – is a great tool for startups and entrepreneurs to build businesses around,” noted Beard.

In recent months, Ripple has displayed an increased interest in investment – in April, the fintech company invested $25 million worth of XRP into Blockchain Capital’s $150 million venture capital fund, while in January two Ripple execs invested in startup Omni. In addition to Blockchain Capital and Omni (which plans to integrate XRP into its marketplace) the Xpring project has also offered support to Scooter Braun (entertainment talent manager and founder of SB Projects - more popularly known for managing pop sensation Justin Bieber) who will be using XRP to help artists better monetize and manage their art, and Stefan Thomas (inventor of the Interledger Protocol, and BitcoinJS creator) who will be using XRP for multiple micropayments applications via his new venture Coil.

As the third largest cryptocurrency, XRP currently has a market cap of around $28 billion, which reached $148 billion earlier this year in January when the cryptocurrency peaked at a price of $3.83. While the wider market crash that followed brought about a significant reduction in those numbers, XRP continues to retain its spot at number 3, behind heavyweights Bitcoin and Ethereum. Meanwhile, the impact of Xpring on the digital asset’s price and the possible expansion of its use cases remains to be seen.

This article appeared first on Cryptovest

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