The lack of clear regulations has always been one of the biggest hurdles when it comes to operating a cryptocurrency-based business in the USA, with multiple regulatory bodies actively cracking down on crypto. This has compelled blockchain payments company Ripple to consider leaving America and move its operations to a more crypto-friendly jurisdiction.
In an October 21 interview with Bloomberg, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse revealed that the company has marked Japan and Singapore as the most likely destination followed by Switzerland, the U.K., and the United Arab Emirates.
Citing the regulatory hostility towards crypto, Galinghouse stressed over the fact that the company doesn’t want to leave, but is being compelled to:
“Regulation shouldn’t be a guessing game. Ripple is definitely a proud U.S. company and we’d like to stay in the U.S. if that was possible, but we also need regulatory clarity in order for us to invest and grow the business.”
Japan is the ideal choice for Ripple
Among all the nations Ripple has shortlisted, Japan seems to be the most likely destination for the company for multiple reasons.
For starters, Japan is one of the biggest markets for Ripple in Asia and is also the home of financial giant SBI Holdings, one of the biggest Ripple backers. Ripple and SBI holdings joined hands in 2016 and even initiated a blockchain venture called SBI Ripple Asia whose MoneyTap app went live in October 2018.
Garlinghouse voiced similar opinions about the nation, stating:
“Japan has been one of our strongest markets. We have a very successful partnership there with a group called SBI. They are actually our largest outside investor, and the CEO there, Kitao-san, has been an innovator and pioneer in a lot things around finance and technology (of fintech)”
The CEO also added that Ripple has even been in talks with the SBI group about relocation to Japan,
“I have spoken to the SBI team about the fact we are looking at the country as a potential destination”
Furthermore, Yoshitaka Kitao joined Ripple’s board of directors last year and was recently chosen as the economic advisor of Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.
Garlinghouse also notes that Japan has been “on the leading edge” when it comes to cryptocurrency regulations.
Among other shortlisted countries, Singapore is another market that Ripple has a strong presence in. The company opened a new office in the nation last year as a part of its Asia-Pacific expansion efforts.
Ripple’s concerns regarding the future of the company are justified, especially since the firm is amidst a class-action lawsuit with the SEC regarding the sale of its native token XRP, which the regulator states, was an unregistered securities offering.