- Ripple is keen on acquiring a license from the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority, as a crypto asset company.
- The cross-border remittance firm told DL News Ripple has plans to apply for a payments license in Ireland.
- Partial win in the SEC vs Ripple lawsuit supports the firm's plans to expand in Europe and the UK.
Ripple, a cross-border remittance firm, is working on its expansion in Europe and the UK, after scoring a partial victory in the lawsuit brought by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
The SEC vs Ripple ruling solidified Ripple’s plans to treat the US as a global hub while setting foot in the UK as a crypto asset firm, seeking a license from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
Ripple Europe arm recently applied for registration with the UK FCA
Ripple’s European managing director, Sendi Young told DL News, the news arm of DeFiLlama, that the firm has “very recently” applied for registration as a crypto asset firm with the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Young added that the payment remittance firm is also preparing an application for a license in Ireland.
After scoring a partial win against the US SEC, Ripple’s expansion plans took shape and the firm decided to treat US as a base for its global hub. Applying for a crypto asset firm license in the UK and with plans to apply for a payments firm license in Ireland, Ripple has solidified its European expansion plans.
We are in the process of applying for our crypto asset registration in the UK and our payments license in Ireland. These are all massive investments with a view that we are going to continue growing exponentially in this region.
Young confirmed that the firm was still increasing its headcount and hiring for more than mission-critical roles. The payment giant has increased its UK and European employees by about 75% in the last eighteen months.
SEC vs Ripple lawsuit FAQs
Is XRP a security?
It depends on the transaction, according to a court ruling released on July 14:
For institutional investors or over-the-counter sales, XRP is a security.
For retail investors who bought the token via programmatic sales on exchanges, on-demand liquidity services and other platforms, XRP is not a security.
How does the ruling affect Ripple in its legal battle against the SEC?
The United States Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) accused Ripple and its executives of raising more than $1.3 billion through an unregistered asset offering of the XRP token.
While the judge ruled that programmatic sales aren’t considered securities, sales of XRP tokens to institutional investors are indeed investment contracts. In this last case, Ripple did breach the US securities law and will need to keep litigating over the around $729 million it received under written contracts.
What are the implications of the ruling for the overall crypto industry?
The ruling offers a partial win for both Ripple and the SEC, depending on what one looks at.
Ripple gets a big win over the fact that programmatic sales aren’t considered securities, and this could bode well for the broader crypto sector as most of the assets eyed by the SEC’s crackdown are handled by decentralized entities that sold their tokens mostly to retail investors via exchange platforms, experts say.
Still, the ruling doesn’t help much to answer the key question of what makes a digital asset a security, so it isn’t clear yet if this lawsuit will set precedent for other open cases that affect dozens of digital assets. Topics such as which is the right degree of decentralization to avoid the “security” label or where to draw the line between institutional and programmatic sales are likely to persist.
Is the SEC stance toward crypto assets likely to change after the ruling?
The SEC has stepped up its enforcement actions toward the blockchain and digital assets industry, filing charges against platforms such as Coinbase or Binance for allegedly violating the US Securities law. The SEC claims that the majority of crypto assets are securities and thus subject to strict regulation.
While defendants can use parts of Ripple’s ruling in their favor, the SEC can also find reasons in it to keep its current strategy of regulation by enforcement.
Can the court ruling be overturned?
The court decision is a partial summary judgment. The ruling can be appealed once a final judgment is issued or if the judge allows it before then. The case is in a pretrial phase, in which both Ripple and the SEC still have the chance to settle.
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