Binance Denies WazirX Connection
Binance CEO has claimed that his firm never finalized the deal to acquire major Indian crypto exchange WazirX.
Binance Turns Away From WazirX
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao has again stirred controversy with his comments about the Indian crypto exchange. According to CZ, the deal between Binance and WazirX fell through.
“On 21 Nov 2019, Binance published a blog post that it had “acquired” WazirX. This transaction was never completed. Binance has never - at any point - owned any shares of Zanmai Labs, the entity operating WazirX…WazirX is responsible all other aspects of the WazirX exchange, including user sign-up, KYC, trading and initiating withdrawals.”
According to him, Binance only serves as a tech solution for WazirX, providing only wallet services for the exchange.
WazirX Parent Company In Trouble With Regulator
The comments from the Binance CEO followed the controversies that have been dogging WazirX recently. India’s financial watchdog, the Directorate of Enforcement (ED), has brought money-laundering charges against the exchange’s operator Zanmai Labs.
Reportedly, investigations led by the ED revealed that WazirX was receiving sizeable funds from questionable non-bank financial institutions and their fintech partners. The exchange has also been accused of laundering these funds abroad. The ED is also accusing Zanmai Labs of creating a “web of agreements” through different entities in order to obscure the ownership of WazirX.
CZ Sides With Regulator
Recognizing the severity of the matter, CZ has understandably taken a strong stand in support of the regulators, especially considering its previous dealings with the exchange. He said,
“Recent allegations about the operation of WazirX and how the platform is managed by Zanmai Labs are of deep concern to Binance. Binance collaborates with law enforcement agencies all around the world. We would be happy to work with ED in any way possible.”
On Saturday, CZ appealed to WazirX users to transfer all their funds to Binance. Soon after, all off-chain transfers from Binance to WazirX were also disabled, preventing users from freely transferring funds between the two exchanges.
WazirX Founder Confirms Binance Deal
WazirX co-founder Nischal Shetty has contributed his own two cents to the matter, claiming that Binance did acquire WazirX. In response to CZ’s vehement denial of a finalized deal with the exchange, Shetty also tweeted,
“WazirX was acquired by Binance. Zanmai Labs is an India entity owned by me & my co-founders. Zanmai Labs has license from Binance to operate INR-Crypto pairs in WazirX. Binance operates crypto to crypto pairs, processes crypto withdrawal.”
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