Yesterday remittance company MoneyGram International announced a new board of directors that included the CEO of the Stellar Development Foundation (SDF), Denelle Dixon. It turns out that SDF made a minority investment in MoneyGram when it recently delisted from the stock market as part of a buyout.
The relationship isn’t a new one. In 2021 the organizations partnered to enable customers to make payments with stablecoins or settle incoming money as USDC on the Stellar blockchain. Dixon described them as the leading cash-to-crypto on and off-ramps.
As a result, Stellar became intimately familiar with MoneyGram and invested when the opportunity arose. Dixon was keen to emphasize that the money came from the SDF treasury used for SDF operations, not its Enterprise Fund for investing in startups.
“This investment positions SDF to contribute to MGI’s journey, particularly in areas such as expanding its digital business, exploring blockchain technology,” wrote Dixon.
Before Stellar, MoneyGram had a close relationship with Ripple and used its On Demand Liquidity solution until Ripple was sued by the SEC. Ripple also invested in the remittance company. Stellar was founded by Jed McCaleb following an acrimonious split from Ripple.
One thing that’s easy to forget is Stellar’s role in IBM’s World Wire blockchain payments network. In some ways this network was a precursor to the bank deposit token networks being explored today. However, the solution withered following the abrupt departure of its leader Jesse Lund.