Binance CEO and founder Changpeng Zhao (CZ) pushed for shutting down the crypto exchange’s U.S. subsidiary Binance.US, The Information reported on Tuesday.
The report, citing two people familiar with the matter, disclosed that the Binance.US board of directors held a vote on whether to liquidate the company. However, Binance.US CEO Brian Shroder was the lone holdout in what would have otherwise been a unanimous decision to shut down the U.S. exchange.
Zhao, who serves as chairman of the board, also voted in favor of shuttering Binance.US – something that shows “how far he was willing to go” to protect Binance’s global operations in light of increased regulatory scrutiny, the people with knowledge of the matter said.
Schroder, who was named CEO of Binance.US in 2021, is said to have opposed the decision on the belief that a sudden shutdown could hurt the U.S. exchange’s customers and force them to move or liquidate crypto quickly.
Binance is currently facing charges from the U.S. Commodities and Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), with the former alleging the exchange offered unregistered crypto derivatives and the latter alleging that Binance operated as an unregistered securities exchange.
Last month, Binance.US announced it would transition to a “crypto-only” exchange and proceeded to delist several U.S. dollar-denominated trading pairs. The exchange saw an exodus of users in the weeks that followed, with several cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, trading at a discount on the platform.