Binance Makes Its First-Ever Acquisition: ‘Trust Wallet’, a Mobile Ethereum Wallet and DApp Browser

On Tuesday (31 July 2018), Binance, one of the world's largest crypto exchanges, announced that it had acquired Trust Wallet, a mobile (Android and iOS) Ethereum wallet (with support for ERC20, ERC223 and ERC721 tokens) and Web 3.0 (DApp) browser.

Trust Wallet, which was first released (for Android) on 25 October 2017, is an open-source mobile wallet app that support Ethereum and over 20,000 different Ethereum based tokens. Its features include:

  • the private key is only stored locally, and is protected with many layers of security;
  • the source code has been audited by security experts;
  • decentralized exchange (through a partnership with Kyber Network); and
  • a fully functioning Web 3.0 browser that allows the user to discover and interact with Ethereum DApps.

Zhao "CZ" Changpeng, CEO of Binance told Bloomberg:

"The users control 100 percent of their funds... Now we have both a decentralized and centralized solution for custody.”

Binance says that Trust Wallet "has built a reputation for security and has held itself to the guiding principles that it will never access user wallets, hold private keys, and ask for personal information." It also says that the "Trust Wallet brand and team will retain the autonomy and freedom to develop the core product while benefiting from the increased synergy from Binance, including the broad user base and the upcoming DEX."

Finally, the Binance CEO told Bloomberg that "Binance is in early-stage talks with a few other acquisition targets."In an interview with Fortune, CZ said that he admired the Trust Wallet development team’s engineering skills, and that this acquisition provided a way for Binance to offer customers a decentralized way to store their cryptocurrency. 

Viktor Radchenko, Trust Wallet's founder said in press release:

“This is an incredible opportunity for Trust Wallet to work with the biggest and the most respected exchange in the world, but we also feel as though we are aligning with a partner that shares a similar approach towards security and user management... This is a great partnership and we look forward to collaborating with the amazing team from Binance.”

According to CNBC, this is how Radchenko explained why he created Trust Wallet:

"I started working on Trust Wallet because app stores did not have any open source wallets for Ethereum and ERC20 tokens. Our focus have always been on building better interface for storing and accessing funds, as well as laying the infrastructure for other developers to build dapps.”

CNBC says that CZ had this to say about why Binance was interested in mobile crypto wallets and why it had chosen Trust Wallet:

“Wallets are the most fundamental interface to the crypto economy, and a secure and easy-to-use wallet is key to proliferate the adoption of cryptocurrencies. Trust Wallet is simply the best in this category in my opinion. Trust Wallet is an on-chain wallet, where user private keys are decentralized, ie, stored on user devices. This compliments the centralized architecture of Binance nicely. Now we have the best of both worlds, and users have their choice... Viktor and the Trust team are product and user focused. The team is small and highly effective and shares the same values as Binance. The combination of Trust Wallet’s team and product is the perfect epitome of what we look for in a great company.”

 

Featured Image Credit: Image Courtesy of Trust Wallet

Token Listing Guidelines for Binance DEX

On Thursday (April 25), Binance unveiled guidelines for listing tokens on Binance DEX, its new decentralized exchange, and said that these guidelines would enable Binance DEX "to facilitate a larger number of crowd-vetted projects, hopefully listing 10x more tokens than currently listed on Binance.com."

Despite what some people think, issuing a token on Binance Chain does not mean that the new token will automatically get listed on Binance DEX. Binance, which has been criticized like most other centralized exchanges for having an opaque listing process, is hoping that the new "transparent and community-driven" listing process for Binance DEX will finally satisfy most if not all of its detractors.

The Binance DEX listing process consists of the following steps:

  • 1. Proposal
    • "It is recommended that Token Issuers first create a thread under the “Token Issuance & Listings” category in the Binance Chain Community Forum."
    • "It is recommended that this public thread contain full answers to the Binance DEX Token Listing Submission Criteria..."
    • "Token Issuers must initiate an on-chain Proposal Request (fee of 10 BNB) to list a trading pair for a token."
    • "Token Issuers must request BNB as the quote asset for their first trading pair. For example, ABC/BNB."
    • "Once the proposal request is submitted, Token Issuers must post the Proposal ID to their proposal thread in the forum as a ‘reply’."
  • 2. Deposit
    • "Once the proposal request is sent, Token Issuers will need to deposit at least 1,000 BNB within 2 days."
    • "Proposals that do not receive sufficient deposits within this timeframe will not be able to move on to the voting stage and their deposit will not be refunded."
    • "If the Vote passes in Step 3 (majority 'Yes'), the 1,000 BNB deposit will be refunded."
  • 3. Vote
    • "At least half of the voting power is required to vote 'Yes' for the proposal to be accepted."
    • "Binance Chain Validators can vote for either 'Yes', 'No', 'NoWithVeto', or 'Abstain' within the time period specified in the proposal request."
    • "The 1,000 BNB deposit will be refunded if the majority of Validators vote for 'Abstain'."
    • "Proposals are denied if one third of the Validators vote 'NoWithVeto' or if half of the Validators vote 'No'."
    • "Denied proposals will lose all the funds deposited, however this result will only occur in rare circumstances when there is relatively clear fraud, scam or spam."
  • 4. List
    • "If the vote is passed, the Token Issuer will need to initiate a 'List' transaction on-chain (2,000 BNB fee) within the timeframe specified in the proposal, while the previous 1,000 BNB deposit will be refunded back to the proposing user."
    • "The trading pairs will be live immediately after this request is completed."

Binance DEX Listing Process Workflow Screenshot.png

Binance says that the "listing application, project information, vote results and all community interaction will be public on the Binance Chain Community Forum," that the decisions of the Binance Chain Validators (who are the only ones with the power to vote) are "purely based on public information in the forum," and that there is no other way "for projects to contact Binance Chain Validators."

One interesting thing to point out is that although the Binance DEX listing fee has been set to 2,000 BNB (currently, according to CryptoCompare, worth around $45,580), originally Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (aka "CZ") was thinking of making the listing fee on Binance DEX be around $100,000, as he mentioned in his first Ask Me Anything (AMA) session on February 7:

"There will be a listing fee on the DEX. I actually deliberately want to set that a little bit high, just so we reduce the number of spam or scam projects. And there’s also a voting process by the validators to be listed on the DEX. So there’s a fee, I think the fee will be probably close to $100K US, so we’ll see. But the fee is adjustable over time, it’s quite easy to change."

Earlier today, Mithril, the first crypto project to migrate its token (MITH) to Binance Chain, got listed on Binance DEX:

 

All Images Courtesy of Binance