Cointelegraph spoke with Marjan Delatinne, global head of banking at Ripple, about her experience, banking, and the future of global payment.
Since January 2018 Ripple has a new global head of banking. Marjan Delatinne joined the company in 2017 after having spent ten years at SWIFT as business director commercializing different banking solutions including Global Payments Innovation (GPI). Part of the Women in Fintech Power list 2017, Delatinne has shown great ability in developing business strategies for innovative initiatives during her career.
Cointelegraph had an opportunity to meet Delatinne in Frankfurt am Main at the Crypto Assets Conference and talk about her experience in sales leadership and banking, about RippleNet - global networks of banks and payment providers - and about her thoughts on the future of global payment.
Cointelegraph: Thank you for joining us. Could you please tell us what excited you in the first place about Ripple when you became its part in 2017?
MD: The vision of Ripple. I was very much impressed by the Internet of Value, which is making money moves instantly by analogy with the data that are exchanging over the Internet. I was working for SWIFT in the past, and correspondent banking is a core business of SWIFT. There are a lot of pain points and problems - and I want to change it. It sounds childish, but I want to make our world a better place.
CT: You studied psychology. How do you apply it to your work?
MD: I studied psychology but business as well. I think psychology is everywhere. What I learned in my study of psychology is how to make you closer to your customers. It is not necessary to manipulate your customers but it is important to understand their needs better. You move on your business and psychological background helps you to build relationships and effectively interact with your clients and gain their trust.
RippleNet and communications
CT: Could you tell us about RippleNet? How could Ripple solve payment problems by using it?
MD: I think this is a very good question. RippleNet enables banks to instantly settle cross-border payments with end-to-end tracking and message each other in real time to confirm payment details prior to initiating the transaction and to confirm delivery once it settles. If you are a part of RippleNet, you can send details and complete transactions in a matter of seconds, minimize liquidity costs and improve your customer’s experience.
CT: A lot of banks have already joined RippleNet. How does it work – the adoption of RippleNet by global financial institutions?
MD: We have more than a hundred banks and payment service providers. They are not all on the same level of maturity in terms of adoption. Some institutions are much more advanced because they joined us before others. When you join Ripple, you follow our business rulebook or network agreement, which ensures the consistency of the usage of the network for all participants. That's very important for the banks because they use this kind of rulebook as the first step. We do have quite valuable payment transactions exchanging over our network and this is reassures and gives confidence to the banks with which we are cooperating.
CT: How do you attract new partners? What are the key challenges in communication with traditional banking institutes?
MD: It takes time to attract new partners, especially big organizations. They have more complex legacy systems and if they invest, they have to be sure that their investment is bringing a return. But we see a significant change in terms of the way the banks are talking to Ripple. The trust that now has been built around Ripple and the fact that a lot of big players are already in our network - for example, Bank of America - make our new partners more confident that Ripple is working.
XRP and Ripple are not the same thing
CT: How do you deal with fake news and disinformation about Ripple?
MD: There is some confusion around what Ripple is and what are the digital assets XRP that have been gifted to our company Ripple. The currency XRP was designed for cross-border payments transfer, and if you are talking about rumors, you should distinct entities. The best thing that we are doing, I should say, is that we are working very closely with regulators and we do have a very stringent compliance and regulatory affairs at Ripple. We are collaborating with regulators, but don't avoid them. We are educating our partners and working with them even closer to their projects. We cooperate with the Bank of England, and we have started a new project with Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority. So our approach is to continue this dialogue with regulators and ensure that they understand what we are doing with the cryptocurrency XRP.
CT: What are the challenges you see for Ripple, and how do you suggest solving them?
MD: For us, any challenge is an opportunity to become better, because we are a new project. Creating a global network is not easy, it takes time. So you have to be very agile in terms of what are the core banks and this ecosystem that we are creating - it’s not only banks. At the same time, we are working with the payment service providers to connect them to the banks. We are discussing with corporations to see how they can better connect with their banks or payment service providers. This, of course, requires a lot of effort and agility in terms of approach. I think that is our priority in the coming weeks and hopefully coming years.
Internet of Value is becoming a reality
CT: What do you think about the future of payments and fintech? How will it develop?
MD: I think the future of payment, especially in the context of Europe, will be PSD2 (The EU's second Payment Services Directive (PSD2) which came into force on January 13, 2018, aims to improve online payment protection, encourage payment services innovation, and make cross-border payments safer. - Cointelegraph) and Open Banking that enables personal information to be shared between organizations, increase competition and create a better consumer experience.
I think we will see a dramatic increase in the volume of payment and innovation of payments. Now the Internet of Value is becoming a reality - thanks to Blockchain technology. Traditional banking institutions must try to join or adapt to it, otherwise they can lose the game. I don't mean that cash will disappear - we will have cash and use it in the future. However, I think the nature of services that banks will offer consumers will be completely different.