Ripple has appointed a former Uber executive to lead expansion into the Southeast Asia region, the company announced on March 18.
Brooks Entwistle joins Ripple after leading the company’s growth as chief business officer of Uber and resolving regulatory issues across the Asia-Pacific region. The new executive director of Ripple’s Southeast Asian wing had previously spent two decades at Goldman Sachs, serving as a partner and chairman in the same geographic area.
Ripple’s determination to press ahead with RippleNet’s expansion in Asia despite an ongoing legal battle with the US Securities and Exchange Commission is not surprising. Brad Garlinghouse, CEO of Ripple Labs, claimed in early March that Ripple’s expansion into the region was ongoing and that its progress would not be affected by the XRP securities case.
RippleNet is Ripple’s proprietary network of financial institutions and payment processors. Its use does not depend on the XRP coin, and the fate of either has little reason to influence the other, positively or negatively.
RippleNet general manager Asheesh Birla said Entwistle’s appointment shows the need for region-specific knowledge as Ripple negotiates with banks from different countries in Southeast Asia.
“The payments ecosystem in Southeast Asia is extremely dynamic and has quite complex, country-specific systems that require a lot of in-depth knowledge […] We are excited to have Brooks lead the prosecution as Ripple doubles its efforts to fuel our phenomenal growth in the region, ”said Birla.
According to Ripple, transactions on RippleNet increased tenfold in 2020 compared to the previous year. In March, one of RippleNet’s most famous users, MoneyGram, left the payment network. At the time, Brad Garlinghouse accused U.S. lawmakers of stifling innovation by failing to set clear guidelines, suggesting the SEC lawsuit may have been a motivating factor in the split.