On Wednesday (19 December 2018), Changpeng Zhao (“CZ” for short), Co-Founder and CEO of Binance, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges (by traded volume), talked about the outlook for the crypto market and his company’s growth strategy.
What Sort of Adoption Are You Seeing of Blockchain Technology?
“2018 has been a tough year in terms of the pricing for cryptocurrency, and I think we see a lot of projects not making it this year. So, it’s a correction year. But the technology was there, and we want to kick off 2019 with a bang. So, that’s why we are hosting this Blockchain Week [Binance Blockchain Week, which is held in Singapore, between 19th and 22nd of January 2019, features two events: the two-day Binance SAFU Hackathon, followed by the two-day Binance Conference]… So, I think the people in the industry are still very confident about the future. So, there’s no worries about that.”
How Much of an Impact Is Price Going to Have on the Bull Story for Crypto?
“So, I think the price is a very strong attraction for a lot of speculators, but the industry is going to grow by the builders, the guys who actually build the applications and the actual adoption of cryptocurrency in the long term. So, there will always be speculation, which will cause the price to fluctuate, either over-fluctuate upwards or over-fluctuate downwards. I think last year it fluctuated upwards too much, and now we’re in a correctional phrase. We don’t know if it has ended. We hope it has ended, but we’re never sure. The long term industry is sustained by real applications, real use cases of cryptocurrency, which a lot of people are building. So, that’s happening regardless of where the price moves.”
How Aggressively Are You Willingly to Expand Given the Current Bear Market?
“So, our strategy has not changed at all. We’ve launched one fiat exchange so far… Next year, we still want to build 10 more fiat exchanges, and we are also launching our decentralized exchange, which is a very core blockchain technology based exchange. That will also allow much more freedom. None of our plans have changed. We’re still pushing forward very aggresively.”
What About Role of Governments?
“I think we definitely welcome government or regulatory involvement. We want clarity, and there’s still too much uncertainty in many countries in the world regarding regulations around the cryptocurrency industry. So, we want clarity, but we also want good sensible regulations. We want regulations that promote innovation.”
Any Plans to Strength Your KYC Requirements?
“We actually have the toughest KYC/AML, and also in general anti money laundering initiatives, in our systems in place… The registration with the email address is just the first step of registration. If you want to anything meaningful afterwards, you have to do KYC/AML and many other things. We also have AI built-in that now detects fraudulent activities, including market manipulations, even just regular fraud… Contrary to what people believe, we actually spend a lot of time and energy [to] make the system safe and secure.”
Featured Image Courtesy of Binance