Ripple Labs’ lead engineer Nik Bougalis is leaving the company after nearly 10 years. Bougalis revealed the news on XRP’s birthday weekend.
Will his departure impact the XRP market?
Another One’s Gone
Nik Bougalis has relinquished his role as the director of engineering at Ripple, the corporate entity behind the XRP Ledger (XRPL).
In a recent tweet, Bougalis said his “decade-long journey at Ripple has been a fantastic (if exhausting and all-consuming) one. I got to work on a project that I love, towards a goal I believe in. But that journey will be coming to an end in a few weeks.”
Bougalis’ clarified that he will not be joining another blockchain project or getting into non-fungible tokens (NFTs) after exiting Ripple.
While at Ripple, the cryptographer oversaw a string of developments to the XRPL’s code, including the XLS-20 amendment that will allow developers to launch NFTs directly onto the ledger. Though a few bugs need to be ironed out, the critical update is scheduled for this November.
Bougalis’ resignation comes as Ripple commences tests of an XRP Ledger sidechain compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), the software that runs smart contracts on Ethereum.
The developer noted that XRP would do just fine without him.
“And what of the #XRPL? Its long-term health and success isn’t predicated on any one person. I’m confident that it will be just fine, thanks to talented and passionate individuals who contribute and participate, each in their own way.”
Bougalis joins a long list of crypto execs who have chosen to step down this year. Notable chief executives in the cryptosphere who have resigned in just the past few months include big industry players, such as Polkadot co-founder Gavin Wood, Celsius CEO Alex Mashinsky, Kraken CEO Jesse Powell, and MicroStrategy’s Michael Saylor.
SEC v. Ripple Takes New Turn
Though unrelated to Bougalis’ departure from Ripple, the fintech firm continues its high-profile legal battle with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on whether the XRP cryptocurrency qualifies as a security.
Ripple recently notched another victory against the regulatory agency as the company finally obtained the long-demanded documents of the former SEC official who said ether (ETH) was not a security. These crucial documents could significantly strengthen Ripple’s defence in the suit.
XRP is currently the sixth-largest cryptocurrency by market cap and is up 0.15% on the day at $0.4565.