Binance CEO Vows to Free Audit, Takes Aim at FTX’s Sam Bankman-Fried
The head of Binance, the world’s top cryptocurrency exchange, promised on Thursday to release an audit of the company and rejected claims that it caused the recent collapse of rival platform FTX.
Changpeng Zhao said an independent study of Binance would be released “in a few weeks” and called for a full investigation into the demise of FTX, before offering a scathing criticism of its founder Sam Bankman-Fried, questioning his mental stability.
Speaking at the Milken Institute’s Middle East and Africa Summit in Abu Dhabi, Chinese-Canadian Zhao insisted “100 percent” that Binance will survive if investors suddenly withdraw money from its platform.
Last week, FTX filed for bankruptcy and Bankman-Fried resigned as chief executive, a day after Zhao scrapped plans to acquire a troubled competitor.
The collapse of FTX, which was once valued at $32 billion (roughly Rs. 2,61,400), sent the cryptocurrency into a tailspin and further dented investor confidence in the young and turbulent cryptocurrency sector.
“That’s the normal behavior of the market. If you want everyone to be equal, then you go back to communism, and that doesn’t work well,” Zhao said.
But he denied intentionally deleting FTX by announcing earlier that Binance was ending its holdings of FTX’s FTX token.
The move prompted Bankman-Fried to tweet: “Well played; you won.”
“Only a psychopath would write that tweet,” said the 45-year-old Zhao, downplaying his influence on the market.
“If I sell bitcoin, nobody cares,” he said.
FTX’s problems were caused by “suspiciousness” and “frustration” of investors according to the billionaires on the Forbes list.
When asked if Binance will issue an independent audit of deposits and loans, Zhao said: “Yes … and I think in a few weeks.”
Zhao was wary that enhanced regulation was the only solution to the crypto sector’s problems, stressing that top industry figures should set the standards.
“I think regulation is an important part…(but) the most important thing is that industry players must act by example,” he said.
“The tricky part is, how do you strike a balance where you encourage innovation…and try to protect consumers?”