Major crypto exchange Binance is holding off on any plans to invest in embattled crypto firms in the United States.
In a Feb. 18 tweet, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao disclosed that the crypto exchange has pulled back on potentially investing in some bankrupt U.S.-based companies, opting to “seek permission first.”
We pulled back on some potential investments, or bids on bankrupt companies in the US for now. Seek permission first. https://t.co/js0OR7gy68
— CZ 🔶 Binance (@cz_binance) February 17, 2023
Zhao also responded to blockchain investor Anndy Lian’s advice to “stay clear” of these firms, saying he agreed with the notion.
Binance’s U.S.-based subsidiary Binance US was in talks to acquire bankrupt crypto lender Voyager Digital’s crypto assets. In January, CoinDesk reported that bankruptcy judge Michael Wiles approved initial disclosure statements of the proposed plan.
The approval came after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filed a limited objection to Binance US’s $1.022 billion offer for Voyager’s assets, questioning how the exchange could afford a purchase of this magnitude.
Binance was also allegedly one of the bidders for bankrupt crypto lender Celsius Network’s assets, according to documents leaked by Celsius creditor Tiffany Fong last month. Investment firm NovaWulf was ultimately selected to acquire Celsius’ assets by the firm’s debtors, as per a report last week.
Regulators have turned up the heat on entities like Binance in recent weeks. The crypto exchange’s dollar-pegged stablecoin, issued by Paxos, became the subject of scrutiny after the New York Department of Financial Services ordered the firm to stop minting BUSD. The Wall Street Journal reported that the SEC also hit Paxos with a lawsuit over its BUSD offering.
In light of recent events, many believe that Binance could be turning its attention away from its US business partners entirely. A Feb. 18 report from Bloomberg, citing sources familiar with the matter, stated that the crypto exchange planned to end relationships with U.S.-based intermediaries, and delist all US-based cryptocurrencies. Zhao labelled these claims as “false” in a tweet shortly after, saying “blockchain has no borders.”