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Will Binance CEO Successor Manage to Convince Regulators?

3 mins
Updated by Geraint Price
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In Brief

  • Binance may appoint Richard Teng as new CEO.
  • Teng was a regulator for the Singapore Exchange.
  • Binance's reputation suggests, however, that a new CEO could be mere window-dressing.
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Former Singapore banking exec Richard Teng could succeed Changpeng Zhao as Binance CEO.

Teng became Binance Singapore CEO in August 2021 after stints at Singapore’s central bank and stock exchange.

Binance Beefs Up Compliance Amid Scrutiny

Teng’s traditional finance track record could see the exchange emphasize compliance amid a flurry of global investigations into its operations. Binance needs to bank credibility with key regulators investigating it on multiple levels.

In February, Chief Strategy Officer Patrick Hillmann told US senators that the exchange is working to plug compliance gaps. Former Wall Street executive Noah Perlman heads a team of 750 compliance staff.

The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission has charged Binance’s CEO Zhao, its former chief compliance officer Samuel Lim, and the global exchange for violating the US Commodities Exchange Act of 1963.

Binance also recently lost its derivatives license in Australia and later terminated eight Australian dollar trading pairs.

Bloomberg reported in 2022 that Binance Singapore failed to secure a license from Teng’s earlier employer after failing to meet money laundering standards. The exchange denied the allegations.

Will Changpeng Zhao Cede Power?

Binance’s track record of vagueness could paint Teng’s appointment unfavorably.

US senators previously accused the exchange of running “sham compliance” whose actions contradicted lofty promises. Additionally, its finances remain tightly under wraps despite senators’ requests for more transparency after the collapse of FTX.

Reuters also reported the blurring of lines between Binance and its Binance.US entity today. Binance.US allegedly used five bank accounts in the name of a Binance executive despite claims the two entities were separate.

Click here to learn more about the differences between Binance and Binance.US

Other reports claim that Zhao owns a majority share in almost all of Binance’s entities, begging the question of whether new corporate governance could be a facade as the firm is not accountable to shareholders and could effectively be a law to itself.

Without checks and balances, Zhao could potentially dictate terms to Teng.

Binance CEO Could Retain Control Despite Successor's Appointment
Binance Almost 73 Entities as of October 2022 | Source: Reuters

The crypto industry has previously been marred by perceived failures to live up to reputations.

Earn customers of Gemini exchange argued founders Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss rode their reputations to take customers’ money rendered inaccessible after lender Genesis paused withdrawals.

The Harvard alums crafted a mature and responsible aura through regulatory compliance.

Some argue that FTX’s failure exposed a lack of corporate governance misrepresented by the demeanor of its founder, Sam Bankman-Fried.

Former US lawmaker Barney Frank was part of the board at crypto-friendly Signature Bank, whose management failed to prevent a bank run in March.

For BeInCrypto’s latest Bitcoin (BTC) analysis, click here.

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David Thomas
David Thomas graduated from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal in Durban, South Africa, with an Honors degree in electronic engineering. He worked as an engineer for eight years, developing software for industrial processes at South African automation specialist Autotronix (Pty) Ltd., mining control systems for AngloGold Ashanti, and consumer products at Inhep Digital Security, a domestic security company wholly owned by Swedish conglomerate Assa Abloy. He has experience writing software in C,...
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