Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, is reportedly in talks with sovereign global wealth funds to sell them a stake in the company.
In addition to planned “mega funding” for its United States-based business, Binance.US, Binance is now also seeking global funding to improve relationships with regulators, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao said in a Tuesday interview with the Financial Times.
According to Zhao, the upcoming funding is aimed to improve its “perception and relationships” with many governments as multiple financial regulators around the world have been cracking down on Binance this year.
“But it may also tie us to specific countries, which we want to be slightly careful with,” the CEO noted.
As Binance is currently in the preliminary stages of discussions, it’s still early to disclose the names of wealth funds involved in the capital raising, Zhao said. “The ticket size involved will not be small. It won’t be a short process.”
Being the biggest shareholder in Binance, Zhao is one of the world’s richest people in the cryptocurrency industry, with a total net worth estimated at $8 billion as of January 2021.
According to the CEO, Binance’s daily transaction volumes surged up to $170 billion in November 2021 from just $10 billion to $30 billion two years ago. Binance.US, the American business operating separately from the global Binance exchange, is planning to have raised a “couple hundred million dollars” by early 2022.
Global regulators have been increasingly scrutinizing the Binance exchange this year, with at least a dozen of governments publishing warnings against the firm, including countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, Italy, Canada, Japan, Singapore, Germany and others.
Binance has taken a number of measures to improve its relationships with global regulators, halting some of its services in certain countries and hiring high-profile executives from traditional finance.
Zhao reportedly said he was not worried about illegal activity on Binance’s platform because the company was “probably better than banks” regarding Know Your Customer and Anti-Money Laundering policies and measures.