Crypto exchange Binance receives Temasek-backed funding

October 24, 2018 10:01
Binance, led by CEO Zhao Changpeng, has received Vertex Ventures' financial backing for expansion into Singapore. Photo: Bloomberg

Vertex Ventures, a subsidiary of Singapore state investment firm Temasek Holdings, has revealed that it has invested in Binance, one of the world's largest cryptocurrency exchanges.

Vertex has established a strategic investment in Binance and will jointly set up Binance Singapore, as the exchange expands operations into the city-state, according to a statement. The amount of the investment was not disclosed.

The fresh funding, backed by Vertex Ventures China and Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia & India, two of the fund's branches, will support Binance in building a fiat-crypto exchange in Singapore, as well as other fiat-crypto gateways and services throughout Southeast Asia, which has significant potential for adoption of blockchain technology with over 650 million population in the region.

Binance's fiat-crypto exchange, which will allow users to swap cryptocurrencies into fiat currencies like Singapore dollar, is set to launch by the end of this year.

The Singapore operations will undergo Know-Your-Customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML) compliance in strict accordance with local regulations, the exchange stated.

"We look forward to building up the blockchain ecosystem and working with all stakeholders in Singapore to support continued innovation in the local fintech space," Binance CFO Wei Zhou said in a joint statement

Many see Vertex’s backing to Binance as a welcoming move of Singapore toward cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology, even as views are still divided among regulators worldwide on the technology.

Binance, which has risen to become the world’s largest crypto exchange based on trading volumes in under one year, previously had conflicts with authorities and regulators in Japan, Hong Kong and New York, Bloomberg noted in a report.

The China-founded cryptocurrency exchange announced in March that it decided to move its base to Malta as its Japanese operations were ordered to be suspended by the Japanese financial regulator.

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