Ripple's distributed ledger technology has been attracting users interested in an alternative method to execute international payments, and this week it added seven new banks to its network.

UniCredit, UBS, ReiseBank, CIBC, National Bank of Abu Dhabi and ATB Financial have all adopted the San Francisco startup’s technology, Ripple said in a June 22 news release.

Ripple allows banks to pay each other directly, thereby eliminating processing fees that come with operating through correspondent banks. It also allows cuts in operational costs.

“Financial institutions are moving beyond blockchain experimentation and projects to real world applications that are driving significant bank-to-bank volume,” Chris Larsen, chief executive and co-founder, said in the release, adding that the network will help pave the way “for new connected commerce opportunities and growing demands for real-time, high volume, low value global payments.”

Ripple began as a peer-to-peer software project similar to Bitcoin, but the

company later began pitching its technology to financial institutions to use for their back-end operations with a particular focus on cross-border transactions. Ripple has since become a frequent collaborator with remittance providers and other early stage cross-border payment companies.

More recently, Ripple opened an office in London to fuel a European expansion and entered a payments partnership with Santander.

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