Binance CEO, Changpeng Zhao recently spoke about the firm’s plans to expand its operations in Europe, citing imminent plans to open a London-based office. He also gave his insight into Facebook’s Libra and whether Binance will be part of the consortium of companies backing Libra.
Brexit Will Foster Crypto Adoption In Europe, Says Changpeng Zhao
World leader cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, has its headquarters situated at Malta and also has active operations on the Isle of Jersey. Changpeng revealed that the exchange is now looking to open an office in London following a report by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) of UK, stipulating guidance on cryptocurrencies and clarifying the type of tokens that are under FCA’s jurisdiction. CZ opined:
“I hope we can open an office in London very soon. There is more regulatory certainty now which is good. I thought the UK regulation was very neutral and positive; they were a little bit strict on the derivatives part which I hope they will be more flexible about.”
The United Kingdom is currently under pressure to withdraw from the European Union (EU). Recently, Michael Gove, a conservative UK Member of Parliament said that the UK is preparing for a no-deal Brexit since the EU declined to revisit UK’s withdrawal agreement. A no-deal Brexit situation will crash the UK’s economy as many fear. However, Changpeng believes it will bolster crypto adoption. He opined:
“I don’t think it will affect things here very much. The UK has a very old and very strong economy. And if anything, [Brexit] is likely to make people adopt crypto more, which is good for us.”
As aforementioned, Binance already serves UK clients via the Malta and Isle of Jersey offices. Changpeng alludes that a new office in London will be great for Binance as it pursues its expansion plans in Europe.
“I think there’s a psychological factor; a psychological closeness factor in people’s heads. It still matters a little bit,” CZ asserted.
Is A Binance And Libra Alliance In The Offing?
In June, Binance’s Chief Strategy Officer Gin Chao mentioned that Binance was in talks with Facebook about being part of the Libra project. He revealed that Binance was hoping to become a permission node on Libra’s network.
In the recent interview, CZ said that when Libra launches, the digital asset will probably be listed on Binance because it will garner massive adoption from the crypto community despite the fact that presently, regulatory bodies and governments are pouring cold water on its plans.
He made it clear that Binance had not joined the not-for-profit consortium of the Libra foundation yet, stating that his main focus right now is to list digital assets that are widely accepted.
“As an exchange, we should stay neutral. So we don’t really comment on coins; we don’t like or dislike coins. We just provide liquidity. It’s most likely Libra will get a large number of users, no matter how much people hate it.”
Albeit no plans are currently underway, Changpeng implied that in future, Binance and Facebook could join forces to embark on the Libra project. Zhao said:
“We are not against working together with them in deeper ways to promote collaborations. As far as I know, there are no concrete plans or agreements to do anything just yet. But we are not against it.”