Former SEC officer: Crypto-casinos will be brought down

Former SEC officer: Crypto-casinos will be brought down

There’s plenty wrong with the cryptocurrency industry, but you don’t have to take it from us. John Reed Stark, a cybersecurity expert and 20-year veteran of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) wrote a scathing analysis of what’s wrong with it for Law360, and a lot of it is the exchanges’ fault.

He begins with the new concept of Initial Exchange Offerings (IEOs), better described as the recent trend of exchanges offering their own digital currency to profit more from the market. Stark doesn’t take kindly to this, calling it an “unregulated crypto-casino fundraising mutation.”

This kind of offering, best exemplified by Binance Coin (BNB), is something the SEC is tracking and will crack down on in due time. He added:

“IEOs represent yet another blatant attempt to hijack a similar-sounding acronym—IPO—in an effort to lure investors seeking to get rich quick. However, just like ICOs, the IEO has not a single element in common with the IPO (other than the first and last letters of its acronym).”

He also pointed to the rampant use of many digital currencies, like Bitcoin Core (BTC) or Monero (XMR), as tools of criminals to hide their activity. “Need a way to collect a ransomware payment?” he asked. “Need to fund terrorist-related activities? Need to hire a hitman? Cryptocurrencies like bitcoin have become the payment of choice for these, and a slew of other, criminal enterprises.”

The reason these exchanges and cryptocurrencies won’t last, Stark concluded, are because they are so obviously tied to criminality. They distance themselves from proper oversight and regulation, and as a result, the SEC and other government bodies are eventually going to crack down hard on them, limiting their potential for future global adoption.

The only digital currency working to seriously correct this problem, and seeking better regulation and oversight, is Bitcoin SV (BSV). Because Dr. Craig Wright, Bitcoin’s inventor, wanted to build a digital currency that was private, but not anonymous, BSV provides the full accountability necessary for a government to hunt down criminals who use it, while providing the stability and scalability necessary for businesses to build with.

Dr. Craig Wright: Crypto exchanges offer false promises of riches

Dr. Craig Wright: Crypto exchanges offer false promises of riches

Binance is ready to re-launch deposits and withdrawals on May 14, and somewhere down the road, they plan to launch their often hyped decentralized exchange (DEX). None of that changes the fundamental problems of what Binance is, and what it represents, though, and in his latest Medium post, Dr. Craig Wright picks apart the fallacies of the crypto market.

Titled “Crypto flim-flam,” Wright’s article looks into exactly what makes Bitcoin valuable, and why the product that exchanges offer is riddled with falsehoods. As the top crypto exchange in the industry, Binance represents a lot of what’s wrong with the industry, and Wright doesn’t hold back.

He first deals with the thought that trades on Binance somehow fall outside of the realm of U.S. law and regulation. That just isn’t the case, and they will pay for it eventually. He writes:

“Binance.com places the exchange squarely within the realm of US control. To say so is not a mere assertion, ‘.com’ domains have been considered to come under US territory for decades now. It is well tested in law.”

The big lie though is in the value people believe cryptos hold, and the trade of that value on exchanges like Binance. The true value of a token is in it’s worth to society, and the fact is, the vast majority of token’s are empty vessels. Binance gets rich by building belief that if cryptos become valuable from your trades, the common investor will get rich as well.

This has to come crashing down eventually, as worthless tokens with no use cases will have no reason to hold value eventually. Write notes, “Unfortunately, in this new round of growth of valueless assets and tokens that point to digital nothing, we will have to see the emperor in his full glory as the market for digital assets returns to its true value.”

Bitcoin SV (BSV), with its mission to scale massively and provide a new data network to the world, is the opposite case. It will prove to have uses as both the world’s new money, and the replacement to the Internet, making it an immensely valuable product. If the crypto market place doesn’t see that, the average consumer eventually will, and the tables will flip. Wright comments, “The exchange is Main Street, not Wall Street. (…) Value is what is offered to society at large. And markets come through use.”

The current rise in the price of Bitcoin Core (BTC) is very much an attempt of the crypto market trying to get as much wealth out of the market as they can before their house of cards comes crumbling down. That same fate will eventually happen for all the alt-coin scams that populate exchanges. Binance will keep that process going as long as possible, because they sell the promise of getting rich for nothing, whereas the real winner of this competition will be the token that provides value.

Wright concludes that there’s only one possible outcome to all of this: “In 20 years, we will look back following the massive crash that will come and see one surviving protocol.”

Bitcoin SV is a safety beacon in the turbulent tides of the cryptocurrency chaos

Bitcoin SV a safety beacon in the turbulent tides of cryptocurrency chaos

There is a lot going on in the Bitcoin ecosystem right now. So much that it is sometimes hard to keep up. There are multiple scandals popping up constantly – OneCoin is being sued by an investor after it was revealed that the cryptocurrency was nothing more than a Ponzi scheme and another fraudster used crowdfunding investments to purchase Bitcoin Core (BTC). As scandalous and embarrassing as these two are, though, they still pale in comparison to what has been making crypto headlines every day for the past week. The Bitfinex/Tether debacle, which has now potentially ensnared Binance, is taking center stage and shows how the top cryptocurrencies are apparently willing to play their own games in order to maintain their control and positions. All the top cryptocurrencies – except one.

Bitcoin SV (BSV) has stayed its course, ensuring that the original Bitcoin stays alive. While everyone else goes off to create their own crypto solution, ignoring the fundamentals of digital currency established by Satoshi Nakamoto, BSV is proudly not veering away, understanding completely what’s at stake.

To that end, BSV has had to suffer in certain aspects. It hasn’t seen the monumental price increases that many incorrectly associate with a crypto’s true value. In fact, BSV is now trading below its utility value, but this is still not a foreboding of rough seas ahead.

BSV is doing what no other digital token is doing. It is scaling to levels that BTC and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) developers said weren’t possible or weren’t needed on an active blockchain. However, the ability to scale results in BSV having real, tangible utility value. By contrast, those digital currency platforms that are not scaling – including BTC and BCH, among others – have become 100% speculative offerings. As such, they are all subject to the whims of traders and could crash to almost zero at any time. This has already been seen on more than one occasion.

The surest guarantee against speculative trading is a utility token. This translates into BSV being the only safe haven in the current uncertain environment and the only alternative that is safe from tanking as a result of the Binance and Bitfinex fiascos that are sure to turn the crypto market upside down.

Bitcoin SV could surge as Bitfinex and Tether scandal unravels

Bitcoin SV could surge as Bitfinex and Tether scandal unravels

Despite a major scandal going on at one of the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchanges, the price of Bitcoin Core (BTC) continues to climb, nearing $6,000 at the time of publishing. More people are now asking if the cause of the increasing price could be market manipulation. Just as importantly, when everything comes to light, will we see a rebound in price for Bitcoin SV (BSV)? 

Ethereum World News (EWN) looked into the potential manipulation on May 6, also wondering if something fishy is going on. There’s a lot of evidence to suggest that the market isn’t behaving the way you would expect considering the Bitfinex scandal.

First, considering Bitfinex has played fast and loose with Tether, using $900 million of it to cover up their own $850 million loss, there are questions as to why other exchanges, including Binance, continue to list Tether. Binance and Kraken were quick to delist BSV over the legal actions of Dr. Craig Wright, which is insignificant when considering a potential fraudulent cover up amounting to nearly a billion dollars.

As Chico Crypto has revealed, there are so many big players in the game who have something to gain by protecting Tether, in the case of Bitfinex, or by abusing it, in the case of Binance. Whatever their intentions are, as long as they continue to protect Tether, which doesn’t seem to be fully backed by fiat, the price of BTC is artificially inflated to the point of increasing in price.

While questions will persist about the actual value of BTC until all of this gets sorted out, and even then, questions will persist so long as the players remain involved, the greater impacts of their market manipulation might see reversals as they fall from grace.

When Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao unilaterally decided to delist BSV, the price of that token quickly decreased. Kraken and other exchanges followed suit. But now that allegations are surfacing, specifically for Binance, that they are protecting Tether to protect the current price of BTC and other altcoins, it’s entirely fair to speculate that they are choosing which coins to pump, and which to hold back.

Furthermore, the time is quickly approaching when Wright will be given his chance in court to prove he was the man behind the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. As EWN noted, Wright has been asked to reveal BTC addresses from the time shortly after Dave Kleiman’s death to a Florida court. Not only that, but he’s chosen to fight trolls who call him a fraud, and in doing so he will prove to UK courts that he was the true creator of Bitcoin.

When Wright lays down all his cards, the world will have all the proof it needs to know that he is the real deal, and the price of BSV should respond accordingly. Combined with the great development and progress being made by the BSV team, this makes it a great investment, as prices should grow healthily.

At the same time, the world will be finding out just how deep the corruption goes with Bitfinex, Tether, and other BTC manipulators. Their house of cards might not entirely topple right away; there’s too many people involved who will fight to keep it standing. Revealed for what they really are though, the world will know who has had the best interests of Bitcoin in mind all along, and who’s been running the biggest con the crypto world has ever seen.

frnt-bitcoin-sv-delisting-crypto-exchanges-bad-precedent

Investment community: crypto exchanges delisting Bitcoin SV ‘sets dangerous precedent’

The traditional investment community is taking a stance against plans by some cryptocurrency exchanges to delist Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BSV).

On Tuesday, the Toronto-based FRNT Financial issued its daily update for institutional investors, in which it addressed the push by some crypto exchanges to delist BSV in response to BSV backer Dr. Craig Wright’s efforts to defend himself against critics who publicly accused him of being a fraud.

FRNT’s story of the day for April 16 noted that the Binance crypto exchange had announced plans to delist BSV on April 22. Some other exchanges have announced similar plans, based largely on social media howls of outrage after Wright filed defamation and libel claims against some crypto critics with large Twitter audiences.

FRNT’s main takeaway from the controversy is that “certain actors specifically are setting a dangerous precedent in the delisting of BSV. Objectively, the only complaints one could have with the Craig Wright camp are 1) disagreeing with the content of his free speech and 2) disagreeing with his implementation of the current legal system. Given the impact that trading venues can have on the visibility and price of a coin, such a subjective delisting sets a precedent which has the potential to increase the space’s vulnerability to manipulation. If a coin can be delisted due to some not approving of a community / person’s legal activities, what’s to say that a similar narrative cannot be created in the future simply to support a malicious actor’s monetary interest.”

For years now, the Crypto Twitterati has attempted to demonize Wright and his claim to be the individual behind the Satoshi Nakamoto pseudonym and part of the original team that developed Bitcoin technology. Wright’s decision to take legal action against some of his more virulent critics was not taken lightly, and was done with the full realization that the retaliation would be swift and strong.

But, as evidenced by his recent legal filing aimed at Blockstream co-founder Adam Back, Wright appears confident in his ability to prove his claims in court. Wright appears equally confident that the BSV protocol’s ability for massive on-chain scaling will ultimately prove itself as the only Bitcoin capable of meeting the needs of a global financial platform.

But don’t take his word for it. CoinGeek invites supporters of all cryptocurrency and blockchain projects to join us in Toronto at the latest CoinGeek Conference on May 29-30 for what promises to be a lively debate on the future of money.

Binance decision to delist Bitcoin SV could violate laws, possibly lead to delisting

Binance decision to delist Bitcoin SV could violate laws, possibly lead to regulatory action

The CEO of the Binance cryptocurrency exchange, Zhao Changpeng, recently stated that he would delist Bitcoin SV (BSV) over the assertions by Dr. Craig Wright that he is Satoshi Nakamoto. This has already caused at least one individual to strike back, asserting that Binance is guilty of volume manipulation and should be banned from Russia. However, things could get seriously worse for the exchange if it decides to follow through with its announcement to delist BSV, as it could be a violation of digital asset regulations that govern exchanges and laws against market manipulation in any jurisdictions where Binance is regulated or operates.

According to an announcement by Binance, it has stated that it will delist BSV as of April 22. The company provides a list of reasons why a particular asset could be delisted, but notably does not identify which reason(s) it claims as the supposed basis for delisting BSV (other than its CEO’s personal dislike of Craig Wright). It will have a difficult time proving any of those reasons apply to BSV, given that CZ, as Changpeng is called, has publicly stated that he is removing the asset from Binance because of Wright’s claims to be Satoshi Nakamoto. CZ said in a tweet on April 11, “Craig Wright is not Satoshi. Anymore of this sh!t, we delist!”

The fact that Binance can take such a childish attitude shows that it is not a legitimate company that can be trusted with users’ assets. The exchange, and in particular CZ, has the ability to completely alter the markets on a whim, which would violate laws in jurisdictions around the world. It is also showing that it is willing to abrogate its responsibilities and role as an industry leader and, as such, can’t be trusted. For all the Bitcoin enthusiasts who believe in a digital currency where no one should be in charge or control the system, Binance’s action should be especially alarming.

Founder and owner of CoinGeek.com, Calvin Ayre, commented: “This decision will certainly be reported to regulators in Malta and other governing jurisdictions as this is surely a case of people in trusted positions abusing that trust and playing God with which token gets the most volume and market access. In essence, market manipulation.

The decision to delist Bitcoin SV seems to be based on the fact that they don’t like one scientist that works on the platform. Craig doesn’t own BSV, not does anybody, so this appears to be very unprofessional. An exchange should just want volume of trading not picking which horses it wants to win the race and, as a result, smells of fear and manipulation.”

Fortunately, there are almost 70 other exchanges which list BSV. And another new BSV-based exchange, which understands the importance of responsibility and financial maturity, is using this opportunity to launch early and capture business from Binance. Float SV is a new exchange that is being launched for only tokenized real assets. It is advancing its launch timetable due to the potential illegal acts by Binance and announced on Twitter today that it is moving up its launch to April 19 (before Binance delists BSV on April 22). Its website isn’t ready to be shown to the world, but enthusiasts can follow the company’s progress through its Twitter feed. Currently, according to the feed, “I am an exchange for tokenized real assets. I will look like @OKEx but will make every effort to evolve. #bsv.”

A Medium post on the exchange states, “Float SV will deliver a real asset exchange experience by committing to only list blockchains running Proof of Work SHA256 and real assets such as commodities and currencies. Float SV will not list native tokens of other blockchains nor securities or STOs. A portion of Float exchange revenues will be reinvested into Proof of Work.”

Furthermore, Binance may be suffering additional loss of business due to its CEO having personal animus against Craig Wright. In response to CZ’s first tweet threatening to delist BSV, Twitter account @BitcoinBehemoth posted that “All the BSV miners in our group (150 or so) have moved their funds which make almost quarter of Binance’s total yearly earnings, away from this bucket shop. Happy bankruptcy @cz_binance.” If that is true, Binance is already losing a significant amount of its total yearly earnings.

Exchanges have the legal and moral responsibility to act fairly and neutrally with respect to the assets on their marketplace, and also to conduct operations in accordance with rules and laws of their governing jurisdictions. Falling short of these standards, regardless of the reason, is a testament to the lack of ethical fortitude of the endeavor and, where great amounts of money are concerned, this is a very disconcerting proposition.

Binance CEO: Crypto needs real projects, not ETFs

Binance CEO: Crypto needs real projects, not ETFs

The CEO of crypto exchange Binance has dismissed those striving to launch a crypto exchange traded fund (ETF), saying what the industry needs instead is more entrepreneurs and more projects to take the sector into the mainstream.

Changpeng Zhao, known in crypto circles as CZ, said during a Periscope stream that rather than ETFs, “for our industry to grow we need more entrepreneurs to build real projects.”

The comments from the influential CEO come at a time of renewed optimism around ETF proposals from VanEck and SolidX, which are hoping to clear regulatory approval with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The prospect of an ETF launch has investors excited too, with the suggestion that anticipation was responsible for a temporary recovery in Bitcoin Core (BTC) prices. But according to CZ, continuing the development of crypto projects and creating new crypto entrepreneurs was more important to the success of the sector.

Exchange traded funds are instruments listed on mainstream financial exchanges, giving investors the chance to buy securities pegged to investments in underlying assets. In the crypto case, this would mean a mainstream, traded investment product tied to the growth of cryptocurrencies, which many assume would attract larger institutional investors into the space.

CZ’s view is that development activity will help create new products and services which will guide crypto to mass adoption, suggesting that this would be a better focus for optimism than the launch of an ETF.

In interview, CZ said he expects Amazon will eventually be forced to issue its own altcoin, which he expects will be another significant event in the journey of crypto to mass adoption and usage.

His comments come at a time of rapid growth in the number and scope of projects in cryptocurrency, with the most notable development action happening around Bitcoin SV (BSV). Preferred for its superior technological infrastructure, Bitcoin SV is winning fans amongst merchants and consumers, as well as startups looking to develop blockchain projects.

With ultra-low transaction fees, fast processing times and infrastructure designed for handling mass global scale, Bitcoin SV is fast becoming the standout choice for development projects.

Amazon entry into crypto space inevitable, Binance CEO says

Amazon entry into crypto space inevitable, Binance CEO says

Amazon is one of the most valuable companies in the world, and it just keeps growing and expanding its services. Until it happens, the question most crypto enthusiasts will keep asking is, when will they take crypto payments?

In a recent Twitter thread, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao wondered aloud why not all Internet-based businesses don’t already accept crypto as a form of payment. When a follower encouraged him to reach out to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Zhao replied, “Amazon will have to issue a currency sooner or later.”

This is little more than one businessman making proclamations on Twitter, which is less than a BitConnect token on most days; however, it does get the conversation going of when the world’s largest online retailer might take the next step.

Amazon isn’t a complete stranger to blockchain technology. Last year, they patented a cryptocurrency data marketplace, with many applications for customer, developer and government use. There really have been no rumblings about Amazon developing its own token though.

In April 2014, Amazon declined to add Bitcoin as a purchasing method because they were “not hearing from customers that it’s right for them.” Nearly five years later, much more of the public is familiar with cryptocurrency, but Amazon has still not added the option.

Where Binance’s chief officer might be wrong is in telling Amazon go to create a cryptocurrency of their own. Amazon is a company that thrives on creating efficiencies where inefficiency existed before. Spending millions on developing a new token, and then millions more on advertising to spread adoption, is incredibly inefficient. Once more, it’s totally unnecessary, as we already have a perfectly good cryptocurrency for them to adopt in Bitcoin SV (BSV).

BSV is the only cryptocurrency that can scale to the needs of a massive enterprise like Amazon. It has already proven it can support 103MB blocks, and the development team suspects it will be able to handle up to 2GB blocks in the near future. It also has reached a certain stability in its protocol, which Amazon can rely upon as a solid foundation for their customers’ use.

The day that Amazon does take the plunge into cryptocurrency will be huge for the industry. When it does, BSV will be ready for them.

Binance founder slapped with lawsuit over failed Sequoia deal

Binance founder slapped with lawsuit over failed Sequoia deal

This year is starting out rough for Binance. 

Zhao Changpeng, the founder of cryptocurrency exchange giant Binance, has been sued in Hong Kong’s High Court by venture capital firm Sequoia Capital after allegedly violating an exclusivity agreement by engaging with another venture capital firm.

Binance—despite only coming into business in July 2017, rose quickly to become the largest cryptocurrency exchange by January 2018. According to court filings, Sequoia started its relationship with Binance in August, bidding for a nearly 11% stake in the company which they valued at around $80 million at the time. Negotiations stretched on for months, however, with Zhao saying in December last year that their valuation of the exchange was too low.

The other venture capital firm in question—IDG Capital—allegedly came into the picture with a far bigger valuation of Binance, and a far bigger offer. According to Bloomberg, IDG offered two rounds of substantial funding: $400 million and $1 billion. The legality of this negotiation between Binance and IDG was challenged by Sequoia, which brought the case to court. An order was handed down banning Binance from entertaining other investors.

This isn’t the only problem Binance faced in recent months. In February, Binance had to temporarily shut down their platform, citing server issues. But this spiralled into an FUD battle against John McAfee, who later apologized for fanning the flame.

About a month later, the exchange fell victim to a breach which saw hackers infiltrating some users’ accounts and using their funds to pump a little known altcoin. This prompted the exchange to put a $250,000 bounty over the hackers’ heads. The exchange also allocated an additional $10 million in rewards for any other hacks that may happen in the future.

Unfortunately, all this commotion also triggered alarm bells from Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA). Binance received a warning of closure from the FSA, saying they have to comply with licensing requirements if they want to continue their operations. This confirmed an earlier report by news agency Nikkei , who Zhao accused of “irresponsible journalism” as he was initially denying any issues with the FSA.

Zhao Tweeted afterwards that they are finding a solution. “We received a simple letter from JFSA about an hour ago. Our lawyers called JFSA immediately, and will find a solution,” he wrote.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.
Binance leads $30M funding round for privacy-centric MobileCoin

Binance leads $30M funding round for privacy-centric MobileCoin

The biggest cryptocurrency exchange by volume, Binance, has ventured into the virtual messaging service world by leading a funding round for the new cryptocurrency, MobileCoin. The Hong Kong based exchange, which has plans to move to Malta in the near future, has sunk no less than $30 million denominated in Ethereum and BTC into the project via its blockchain incubator Binance Labs. MobileCoin’s development team also includes the creator of Signal, Moxie Marlinspike.

The new cryptocurrency will be using the Stella consensus Protocol to operate. This makes privacy a focus of the operation, while also creating a seamless user experience that lends itself particularly well to integrating with mobile messaging apps such as Signal and Whatsapp. Both of these systems use end-to-end encryption technology that was developed by Marlinspike himself.

Binance Labs described MobileCoin as ‘a mobile-first, user-friendly cryptocurrency which plays a critical role in mainstream cryptocurrency adoption.’ Of course, it remains to be seen whether this altcoin will be taken up although it will probably have a promising start when listed on the Binance exchange.

Binance seems to be attempting to emulate Coinbase by investing in other industry projects. The latter has since launched its first venture fund, although it has also stated that it would not be investing in any crypto assets as this could create a conflict of interest as well as regulatory problems.

There are rumours, however, that Marlinspike is not that much involved in the project although he is described as a technical advisor. On Twitter, Dogecoin creator Jackson Palmer noted that Marlinspike is “barely involved with the actual development on this thing.”

Currently, MobileCoin does not appear to have an open-source code repository, though the rumors about Marlinspike’s involvement or lack of it, are currently just rumours. Once MobileCoin releases the project’s open source code, the true level of Marlinspike’s involvement in the project’s development should become clearer.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.
Malta attracts yet another cryptocurrency exchange—OKEx

Malta attracts yet another cryptocurrency exchange—OKEx

Hot on the heels of Binance declaring that it is coming to Malta, cryptocurrency exchange OKEx confirmed that it’s also setting its sights on the Mediterranean Island, which has proudly declared itself to be the “Blockchain Island.”

In a blog post on Thursday, OKEx announced that it was looking favourably at moving its operations to Malta since there was a lot of potential for the technology to move forward. Parliamentary Secretary for the Digital Economy Silvio Schembri posed for a photograph with Tim Byun and Chris Lee, top officials of OKEx whilst tweeting the announcement.

“Malta’s Virtual Financial Asset Act is a solid foundation for the industry and the government to work together in fostering the nascent blockchain/digital asset industry. More specifically, Malta’s sound risk-based approach will help cultivate a responsible, compliant, and healthy ecosystem,” explained Tim Byun, chief risk officer and head of government relations at OKEx.

“We look forward to working with the Malta government as it is forward thinking and shares many of our same values, the most important of which are protection of traders and the general public, compliance with Anti Money Laundering and Know Your Customer standards, and recognition of the innovation and importance of continued development in the Blockchain ecosystem,” added OKEx CEO Chris Lee.

Incidentally, Malta has just proposed major anti-money laundering legislation which is expected to sail through the local Parliament. This continues to confirm the much vaunted hype behind the Mediterranean island of Malta, which has already secured a major coup with Binance founder Changpeng Zhao tweeting his support for further expansion in the blockchain and cryptocurrency industries.

OKEx is currently based outside of Hong Kong and is operating from Japan, but has actively been considering a move from some time following regulatory clampdowns in the Asian country.

Malta, on the other hand, has begun actively courting cryptocurrency firms. Government officials have said that they want to transform the EU member state into a “Blockchain Island” through the passage of blockchain-friendly legislation.

The island saw the first major fruits of those efforts in March, as Hong Kong-based exchange Binance—currently the largest in the world—confirmed that it would move to Malta and not establish its base in Japan as previously planned.

Malta’s Prime Minister Joseph Muscat personally welcomed the company to the region, and Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao has said that he is aware of more than 20 cryptocurrency projects considering a move to Malta. Amongst these is the TRON project backed by Justin Sun, who has also tweeted his support for Malta’s ambitious moves in the region.

OKEx and Binance are not the only Hong Kong-based exchanges plotting to relocate their operations. Bitfinex, the sixth-largest cryptocurrency exchange, is reportedly to move its headquarters to Switzerland.

Note: Tokens in the SegWit chain are referred to as SegWit-Coin BTC (inaccurately called Bitcoin Legacy or Core by many) and SegWit Gold (SWG) and are no longer Bitcoin. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is the only true Bitcoin as intended by the original Satoshi white paper.  Bitcoin BCH is the only public block chain that offers safe and cheap microtransactions.
Cryptocurrency exchange Binance sets its sights on Malta

Cryptocurrency exchange Binance sets its sights on Malta

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by traded value, is planning to open an office in Malta, founder Zhao Changpeng confirmed in an interview with Bloomberg from Hong Kong.

The exchange, founded in Hong Kong last year, will soon start a “fiat-to-crypto exchange” on the European island nation and is close to securing a deal with local banks that can provide access to deposits and withdrawals, according to Zhao. The executive did not provide a timeframe.

The move could also be seen as an effort by Binance to escape serious regulatory issues which it encountered in China and Japan recently. Binance also suffered a number of hacks in the past weeks which somewhat dented its reputation. Zhao described Malta as “very progressive when it comes to crypto and fintech.”

Binance’s move to Malta was also announced through a tweet by Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and was further confirmed by Zhao in another tweet.

Worldwide regulators have been cracking down on cryptocurrency exchanges and businesses since last year, leaving many like Binance struggling to find a permanent base. The company had an office in Japan and was trying to get a license to operate, but decided to remove its staff to avoid a clash with local regulators, Zhao said. Japan’s Financial Services Agency issued a warning to the venue on Friday for operating without approval. That news led to a crash in the price of several crypto currencies including Bitcoin.

The move to Malta comes as policymakers look for ways to promote the nation as a leader in the digital assets field. The government has held several public consultations on regulating virtual currencies, token sales and crypto exchanges. Plans for a Malta Digital Innovation Authority that will certify and regulate blockchain-based businesses and their operations were unveiled last month, the Malta Independent reported. The organization will also create a framework to oversee initial coin offerings, according to the report.

Zhao said he had recently been invited by the Maltese government to review an upcoming bill that was favourable to crypto businesses. Binance was ranked as the world’s top-ranked exchange by volume for the past 24 hours, trading about $1.7 billion, according to Coinmarketcap data.

Note: Tokens in the SegWit chain are referred to as SegWit1X (BTC) and SegWit Gold (SWG) and are no longer Bitcoin. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is the only true Bitcoin as intended by the original Satoshi white paper.  Bitcoin BCH is the only public block chain that offers safe and cheap microtransactions.