Ripple, the blockchain payments firm, has reportedly acquired a stake in the European cryptocurrency exchange, Bitstamp. The acquisition was first reported by Galaxy Digital, a digital asset management firm, in its first quarter 2023 report.
Galaxy Digital says it advised Pantera Capital, a crypto VC firm, to sell its stake in Bitstamp to Ripple in Q1. It’s unclear how much the acquisition cost Ripple.
Bitstamp is currently the seventh-largest cryptocurrency in terms of trading volume, with around $163 million worth of cryptocurrencies traded in the past 24 hours, according to CoinMarketCap.
The acquisition has sparked speculation about what it means for XRP, the native token of Ripple. Bitstamp is currently the second-largest market for XRP after Binance.
Additionally, the exchange previously served as a gateway for Ripple, enabling entry into RippleNet. As we speak, XRP now accounts for 30% of the total trading volume on Bitstamp, with the XRP/Euro pair being the most popular.
Some speculate that the acquisition may be connected to Ripple’s objectives for its Liquidity Hub (LH) or On-Demand Liquidity (ODL) services.
It’s worth mentioning that Ripple’s popular ODL solution uses XRP to settle transactions, while the LH does not include the token.
While the specific details and importance of the deal will probably be revealed at a later date, it signals Ripple’s move to boost its offerings further, considering its recent acquisition of Switzerland-based crypto custody firm Metaco for $250 million in tokenization push. Whether the latest Bitstamp deal boosts XRP liquidity remains to be seen.