Ripple paid MoneyGram $11.3 million in 2019, remittance firm's CEO says 'trading volume continues to grow'

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Remittance company MoneyGram has received $11.3 million from distributed ledger startup Ripple during the last two quarters of 2019, according to newly-published SEC filings.

The filings characterize it as a "benefit" from Ripple to the tune of $8.9 million during the fourth quarter of 2019 and $2.4 million in the third quarter. 

"Revenue was $323.7 million, a decline of 6% from the fourth quarter 2018. Revenue excludes $8.9 million of benefit from Ripple, which will be accounted for as a contra expense rather than revenue based on a recent consultation with the Securities and Exchange Commission," MoneyGram noted in its statement.

According to an earnings call conducted on Tuesday by MoneyGram, the benefit appears to be derived from MoneyGram's use of RippleNet. 

Lawrence Angelilli, MoneyGram's CFO, said on the call that "as we've discussed in the past MoneyGram receives a market development fee based on the volume of foreign exchange that we transact on Ripple's platform."

Angelilli indeed mentioned a revenue component during the third-quarter earnings call on November 1. At the time, according to a published transcript, he said that "we are compensated for developing and bringing liquidity to these markets as well as providing a reliable level of foreign exchange trading activity on a daily basis. The third quarter was the first time we recorded revenue from this agreement."

MoneyGram CEO Alex Holmes said during the earnings call that the remittance firm will continue to expand its use of Ripple's platform in the coming year.

"I couldn't be more pleased with the partnership and the success we've had with Ripple. Today our trading volume continues to grow and we're partnering to expand the service to more corridors," Holmes was quoted as saying. "I'm also excited to announce that we are working to integrate RippleNet for account-to-account transfers in 2020. This new integration will further accelerate our progress in accomplishing our vision of real-time global settlement."

MoneyGram's partnership with Ripple was announced last June. As part of the arrangement, Ripple invested a total of $50 million into the remittance firm, as previously reported.

A request for comment sent to Ripple was not returned by press time.

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