Binance’s new CEO keeps global HQ location secret


  • Binance’s CEO won’t say where their HQ is, raising transparency questions.
  • Binance faces U.S. scrutiny and must comply with a monitor for five years.
  • The ex-CEO pleaded guilty and left, and Binance’s China ties are controversial.

Richard Teng, the newly appointed CEO of cryptocurrency exchange giant Binance, has declined to disclose the location of the company’s global headquarters, continuing its tradition of positioning itself as a decentralized and globally dispersed entity. 

In a recent interview with the Financial Times, Teng firmly pushed back against inquiries about the company’s primary base of operations, sparking renewed controversy around Binance‘s elusive corporate structure.

CEO defends Binance’s stance

Teng’s refusal to divulge Binance‘s global headquarters location was met with defiance. He questioned the sense of entitlement behind the demand for such information and stated,

“Why do you feel so entitled to those answers… Is there a need for us to share all of this information publicly? No.” 

Teng did, however, reveal that Binance has European headquarters in France and Middle East headquarters in Dubai, promising to unveil the global headquarters “as and when it’s appropriate.”

This response raises questions about the transparency and regulatory compliance of one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges. Binance has long been criticized for its opaque corporate structure and its perceived ties to China, despite officially leaving the country several years ago.

Binance’s opaque corporate structure

Binance’s previous CEO, Changpeng Zhao, consistently maintained that the exchange had no global headquarters at all. The absence of a physical headquarters listed on the company’s website and its description of a global advisory board with members scattered worldwide has only added to the confusion. While Binance has a holding company in Malta, Maltese regulators have denied having any regulatory authority over the exchange.

The true base of operations for Binance has been a contentious issue, with various reports, including those from the Financial Times, alleging that the company maintains ties to China, which contradicts its official stance and raises regulatory concerns in multiple jurisdictions.

Regulatory scrutiny and compliance efforts

In addition to avoiding questions about its headquarters location, Binance has recently been subjected to increased regulatory scrutiny and legal action. Teng acknowledged that the company has submitted to audits in regions where it operates but did not disclose the names of specific audit firms involved.

The exchange has faced significant legal challenges in the United States, culminating in agreements with various U.S. agencies in November. These agreements require Binance to operate under a compliance monitor appointed by the U.S. government for up to five years. Teng emphasized the positive aspect of this arrangement, stating,

“The compliance monitor… is a key positive… That gave a lot of confidence to users, including institutional users, which are now approaching us in a very aggressive fashion.”

As part of the settlement, Binance will pay substantial fines and has committed to bolstering its compliance efforts. The company’s former CEO, Changpeng Zhao, pleaded guilty to related charges in November and will face sentencing in February. He resigned from his role on the same day, making way for Richard Teng to assume the position of CEO.

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