The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is partnering with Ripple Labs Inc. and digital payments firm Coil to implement the Interledger Protocol, the Foundation’s Deputy Director and Principal Technologist Miller Abel tweeted Oct. 17. The Foundation itself has not made a formal announcement regarding the partnership.
Apart from the implementation of Ripple’s Interledger Protocol, which is designed to connect different payment ledgers and enable the faster processing of cross-border transfers, the partnership is set to explore the ways Mojaloop can support “pro-poor payment systems.”
Mojaloop was launched by the Gates Foundation in October last year and employs Interledger technology. It is an open-source mobile payment platform for financial organizations, government regulators and other fintech industry players geared to promote mobile payments in the developing world and provide financial services for unbanked people around the world.
According to data from the World Bank, in 2017 there were about 1.7 billion adults who were technically unbanked, which is roughly 30% of the global population. Most of them live in low and middle income emerging markets and do not have literal access to regular banking due to a lack of clear identification information.
With blockchain-powered platforms, underbanked individuals can reportedly receive a digital identity for use in their banking, simply with the help of their smartphones, while biometrics will do the rest.
Coil, which was founded by former Ripple CTO Stefan Thomas, is also based on Interledger technology. The subscription platform allows users to monetarily support content creators in addition to controlling ads and streamlining the website paywall process.