MoneyGram International
Inc.

MGI 4.41%

signed on to run a pilot program testing XRP, a digital currency created by San Francisco startup Ripple, in its payments network, the companies said Thursday. The Dallas-based company agreed to test XRP as a tool for reducing money-transfer costs and settlement times.

A spokeswoman from MoneyGram said the pilot was limited to internal processes and that this is the first time it has worked with Ripple. The pilot program is open-ended.

Ripple develops software, based on the concepts underlying the digital currency bitcoin, that is aimed at creating networks for banks and financial institutions that would allow for faster and cheaper interbank trading and settlement. Ripple has about 100 banks, including

UBS Group
AG

,

Banco Santander
S.A.

and

Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria
S.A. , signed on as customers, but has been working to sign up remittance companies like MoneyGram as well.

Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse said in a tweet earlier this month that three of the five largest money-transfer companies would begin using XRP this year. MoneyGram, with 350,000 agents around the world, is the second-largest money-transfer company, behind only

Western Union
. Read more from wsj.com…

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