Siam Commercial Bank (SCB), Thailand’s oldest bank has partnered with Ripple to develop blockchain a mobile application for instant, low-cost cross-border payments. The 112-year-old SCB an operating income of 138.2 billion baht ($4.6 billion) and 3,187 billion baht ($105 billion) worth of assets in 2018. The app will be known as SCB Easy.
SCB’s SVP of Commercial Banking, Arthit Sriumporn, already demonstrated the app at Ripple’s annual Swell conference. He was able to send money to the recipient’s bank account within 40 seconds. Furthermore, Arthit stated:
It is so difficult to send and receive money today. People must physically go to a bank branch, fill out long and complicated forms and wait for payments to be received—with no transparency,” said Sriumporn. “With our service, their loved ones from abroad can transfer payment and receive money immediately,
SCB is also working with Ripple to offer cross-border EMVCo QR payments. QR payments are popular throughout Asia, with China leading the way with 86% of the population using the WeChat app. Thailand is also amongst the top places with around 67% using mobile for QR payments. By looking at the statistics It is only logical that SCB looks to offer customers micro-payment services in addition to cross-border remittances.
At the same time, SCB is planning to expand its presence in other Asian countries such as Cambodia, Vietnam, and Myanmar, where only around 35% of the total population have bank accounts. The features of SCB Easy such as opening new accounts online, without the need to visit a physical location will surely be appreciated.
Arthit explained how excited he is about Ripple’s blockchain technology that allows offering this innovative service to bank customers and tourists visiting the country. He described the service by referring to an example of a tourist wanting to purchase goods in Thailand. He will no longer need to convert to local currency and can make the purchase simply by scanning the QR code from his smartphone:
Imagine you are a tourist coming to Thailand, and you can use your home country mobile application to scan for payment and eliminate the need to exchange for local currency. You can use your mobile app, scan the QR payment and receive goods right away.
Image source: Wikimedia