Ripple, a San Francisco-based financial technology company, continues to inject XRP into a growing Ripple ecosystem—although there is a legal allegation that XRP is an unregistered security.
Ripple's investment division, Xpring, announced on Thursday that it was involved in a $4 million seed round of in-browser payment processing startup Coil, led by Ripple's former chief technology officer Stefan Thomas. (Thomas and Ripple are the only participants in this round of financing.)
According to a press release, Xpring also announced on Thursday that it has provided Coil with 1 billion XRP (approximately $265 million at today's price) to help Coil build a creator, consumer and strategy. A community of partners. Ethan Beard, vice president of Xpring, said the XRP funded by Coil came directly from Ripple's XRP balance sheet.
The funding has allowed Coil to develop an ambitious development plan that includes investing $20 million in Imgur, a well-known photo-sharing platform, and undisclosed investment in video streaming startup Cinnamon.
The Coil platform allows subscribers to pay $5 a month, so when users consume content from a Coil-compatible website, content creators—such as musician Riley Q and XRP fan blog Hodor—will automatically receive XRP. Pay, or transfer dollars through a French bank. Riley Q told CoinDesk that she has earned $3,400 in XRP so far.
Thomas told CoinDesk: "Some of our top creators have earned thousands of dollars a month." He declined to say how many users, and would not disclose the value of the deal.
Coil relies on the Interledger protocol, and Thomas told CoinDesk in May that the agreement will eventually support the cash option for other cryptocurrencies. Regarding the digital media empire that Coil hopes to attract, Thomas said:
“Our dream is that you only need to subscribe once to browse the entire network and support your favorite creators without the need for advertising or paywalls.”
However, for now, content creators are still under-supplied.
In an interview with CoinDesk, Riley Q said:
“There are no artists on this platform. I think this is a great opportunity for early participation. There are not many markets that have not yet been developed, but I managed to find one. I feel the future of encryption fire coins, Coil and the entire music industry. Very excited."
Xpring expands investment in Ripple Ecology
To say the least, Xpring's investment funding is ambitious.
Beard said he did not receive any restrictions or minimum requirements when it comes to investing in XRP directly from Ripple's own balance sheet.
“Our focus is on building a strong ecosystem around XRP,” Beard told CoinDesk. “The difference between us and traditional investors is that we build infrastructure and tools that make it easier for developers to build with XRP, and then we support projects… all around the goal of improving the use of XRP.”
With 1 billion XRP as a treasure trove of encryption, Coil itself will be the second focus of XRP distribution.
CEO Thomas said that Coil is running a “booster” program that pays XRP grants to top content creators on their media platforms. He declined to say how many creators have participated in the project, but as of May this year, they have received a total of $10,000 worth of cryptocurrency.
In addition to Imgur and Cinnamon, Coil also works with a mobile browser startup called Puma Browser.