Binance is an ecosystem that includes a centralized cryptocurrency exchange with the world’s largest trading volume, blockchain platform BNB Chain, training center, investment and charity funds, NFT-marketplace and other products.
What is the Binance exchange?
The first and main product of Binance is the cryptocurrency exchange, which started operating in 2017.
It offers various tools: spot trading of digital assets and leveraged transactions, derivatives, a section for P2P exchange. In addition, users can make passive income from cryptocurrencies through stacking and farming, a debit card feature and other services.
According to the official website, as of April 2022, Binance supports more than 600 crypto-assets and over 40 fiat currencies. The platform has 90 million registered users.
According to the results of the survey conducted at the end of 2021, this exchange was the most popular among the readers of ForkLog – more than 70% of respondents trade on it.
Binance does not disclose financial data. According to various estimates, its revenue in 2021 amounted to $ 14.6 billion to $20 billion. According to media reports, in 2021, the company’s own estimate was $ 200 billion.
The exact number of Binance employees is unknown, but in early 2022, Changpeng Zhao, the project’s CEO, said that the remote staff numbered about 4,000 people.
Who founded Binance?
The founder of Binance is Changpeng Zhao. He is the CEO of the company and is its largest shareholder.
Zhao was born in Jiangsu, China, then moved with his parents to Canada where he graduated from McGill University. After graduation, he did an internship at the Tokyo Stock Exchange, where he developed software for high-frequency trading. He then worked for several years at Bloomberg.
Zhao founded his first company in 2005, which developed algorithms for high-frequency trading.
He started working in the crypto industry in 2013, becoming one of the first employees of Blockchain.com. He served as technical director of the OKCoin exchange.
Since the founding of Binance in 2017, Zhao has served as its CEO.
In 2022, Changpen Zhao became the leader of Forbes’ ranking of the richest people in the blockchain industry. The publication estimated his fortune at $65 billion.
Is Binance safe?
Binance guarantees users refunds in the event of large-scale hacking of the exchange. For this purpose, in 2018 the company opened a special fund called Secure Asset Fund for Users (SAFU). From it, in particular, compensated stolen cryptocurrencies to the amount of $40 million in 2019.
SAFU receives a share of the fees paid by users. According to official data, as of the end of January 2022, the size of the fund was $1 billion. The fund is held in BNB, BUSD and BTC.
What is BNB Chain?
BNB Chain is an EVM-enabled blockchain launched by Binance in 2019. It became a single blockchain platform in February 2022 after the merger of BNB Beacon Chain (formerly Binance Chain) and BNB Smart Chain (formerly Binance Smart Chain).
BNB Chain works on the Proof-of-Staked Authority consensus algorithm and is focused on the work of decentralized applications with a large number of users. The main development areas of the network are decentralized finance (DeFi), non-interchangeable tokens (NFT), blockchain games (GameFi) and meta universes (MetaFi).
In late 2021, Binance launched a $1 billion fund to support BNB Chain. The developers intend to bring the total number of users of applications based on this blockchain to 1 billion people.
What popular apps work on the BNB Chain?
PancakeSwap is a decentralized exchange (DEX) based on an automatic market-making mechanism. It ranks third in terms of trading volume among DEXs.
Venus is a protocol for creating decentralized markets and issuing tokens and algorithmic stablecoins.
Era7: Game of Truth – tactical strategy using NFT cards.
Cream – a lending protocol with the ability to borrow tokens issued in the BNB Chain.
Biswap – a decentralized exchange.
What is BNB and Binance USD (BUSD)?
BNB is a native coin of the Binance ecosystem. It is in the top 10 by capitalization. It operates in the BNB Chain network.
- The main ways to use BNB:
- Trade commission discounts for transactions in Binance.
- Payment of transaction fees in BNB Chain.
- Payment for services and goods in some services and online stores.
- Participation in tokenseals on Binance Launchpad.
- Payments with Binance Visa Card.
- Liquidity pools and decentralized protocols usage on BNB Chain.
- Donations for Binance Charity.
Binance USD (BUSD) is a stablecoin project founded by Binance and the American company Paxos. The price of the asset is pegged to the U.S. dollar at a ratio of 1:1. BUSD is the fourth most capitalized among the steiblocoins. It works in the BNB Chain network and Ethereum.
The stability of the BUSD price is provided by the dollar reserves in the account of a special company, working in the United States. It is regulated by the New York State Department of Finance and is audited monthly. The amount of reserves corresponds to the number of Binance USD Stablecoins in circulation.
What other products are in Binance?
In addition to the crypto-exchange, the Binance ecosystem includes the following products:
- Binance Labs, a business incubator designed to support entrepreneurs, projects and communities in the development of blockchain startups using the BNB Chain. Binance Labs currently has more than 120 projects in its portfolio.
- Binance Academy – a learning portal with a database of educational articles and videos about digital asset trading, blockchain technologies, projects and companies.
- Binance Charity Foundation – a non-profit charity that runs a number of charity programs in the field of poverty alleviation.
- Binance Launchpad is an exclusive tokenization platform. Major projects that have been launched on Binance Launchpad include Axie Infinity, The Sandbox and Celer Network.
- Binance Research is a cryptocurrency market research and analysis department that produces research and provides professional data.
- Binance NFT – a trading floor, where all kinds of digital works of art and collectibles are presented.
- Binance Card – Visa cryptocurrency debit card system.
- Binance Pay – service of cross-border cryptocurrency transfers.
- Binance also acquired several cryptoprojects, which continued to operate while maintaining their brand and autonomy:
- CoinMarketCap, the most visited aggregator of digital asset trading data.
- Trust Wallet – a cryptocurrency wallet supporting a large number of digital assets.
- WazirX is India’s largest cryptocurrency exchange.
Why do people criticize Binance?
Binance provides trading access to users from practically all countries of the world. However, since its launch, it has been criticized by the authorities and regulators of certain states due to the lack of necessary licenses and permits.
The company does not disclose its legal structure, exact number of offices and employees. Binance founder Changpen Zhao and its representatives have long denied that it has a headquarters.
Back in 2018, the platform announced it would “move” to Malta, which was then called a “blockchain island” for its favorable cryptocurrency laws. However, in early 2020, the Maltese regulator reported that Binance did not have a license to trade digital assets.
In 2019, U.S. authorities officially banned Binance from operating in the country. It then opened a separate platform, Binance US, on which users from the United States can trade. Meanwhile, in 2022, U.S. law enforcement began investigating Binance US over alleged ties between Binance US and trading firms affiliated with Changpen Zhao.
Throughout 2021, Binance faced a barrage of criticism from regulators in various countries, including Malta, the Netherlands, Italy, Poland, Singapore, South Africa and Malaysia. Officials often warned their citizens about the company’s lack of necessary approvals.
Against the backdrop of regulatory concerns, the head of Binance issued an open letter stating that it was beginning to transform its digital ecosystem into a legal enterprise with a centralized business structure. He also talked about plans to localize services in certain countries and work more closely with law enforcement.