Blockchain startup Ripple hires key player from Google

Ripple Labs Inc have tapped Google’s Amir Sarhangi as vice president of products.

Sarhangi had been leading Google in RCS, or Rich Communications Services, an alternative to text messaging. RCS is pitched as a successor to SMS as it is better at handling multimedia messages and documents such as tickets and boarding passes. He joined Google through its acquisition of Jibe Mobile in 2015.

San Francisco’s Ripple is one of the larger startups trying to capitalise on blockchain as currency. They report selling over $163 million in their currency, XRP, over the last quarter and it is believed that they will soon be listed with crypto-exchange giant Coinbase.

RippleNet is aimed at banks and payment providers and offers faster and more secure transfers. Its existing customers include Santander and Moneygram.