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Ripple will leave U.S. if case fails, says CEO Brad Garlinghouse

Jun 23, 2022
Brad Garlinghouse, Ripple on Crypto Stage during day three of Collision 2022 at Enercare Centre in Toronto, Canada.

Photo By Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile for Collision via Getty Images

A growing number of companies have been moving to Miami over its more business-friendly policies. Ripple could move outside the U.S. entirely if it loses the lawsuit brought against the company by the SEC, CEO Brad Garlinghouse told Axios at the Collision conference in Toronto.

Why it matters: Losing its lawsuit could have a dampening effect on the broader crypto industry — raising the question of whether even more companies in the space could exit the U.S.

Driving the news: "It's not that we could, we will," said Garlinghouse, when asked if he could re-domicile the California-based business to another country should it lose its case.

  • Winning the lawsuit in theory could turbocharge growth for the business, giving other U.S. companies more confidence to work with Ripple. Major crypto exchanges in the U.S., like Coinbase for example, suspended the listing of Ripple's XRP token due to the ongoing legal case.
  • If it loses its lawsuit, Ripple will focus outside the country — effectively how it's been operating since the SEC sued the company in 2020.
  • "If you think about how the world is operating right now, it's as if the case has been lost other than a few other exceptions," he said on stage. "So if we lose, if Ripple loses the case, does anything change?"

Background: Ripple has signaled that it believes a conclusion to the lawsuit — in which the SEC alleges the company sold unregistered securities — could come in 2023.

  • Ripple has also signaled that it believes the courts will rule in its favor — though that is no guarantee.

This all comes after Ripple announced plans to open up an office in Toronto, adding 50 engineers initially and ramping up to hundreds of employees.

  • That would not be a far cry from the 300 employees it currently has in the U.S. — it's largest base. The company in total is just shy of 700 employees.
  • Garlinghouse has previously noted that most of its growth has been outside of the U.S.

Yes, but: While it will continue to be business as usual for Ripple, leaving the U.S. could cut off a path to growth for the company. The U.S. is after all, as Garlinghouse himself notes, the largest economy in the world.

Of note: Garlinghouse has previously said that Ripple could consider an IPO once the lawsuit is resolved.

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