Why did Binance CEO, Changpeng Zhao, step down

Why did Binance CEO, Changpeng Zhao, step down

Changpeng Zhao, commonly known as CZ, was on Tuesday, November 21, 2023, announced that he’s stepping down as the Chief Executive Officer of Binance.

Changpeng Zhao is a Chinese-born Canadian businessman, investor, software engineer. Zhao is the co-founder and former CEO of Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume as of July 2022.

In the post made on X (formerly Twitter), CZ wrote in part; “Today, I stepped down as CEO of Binance. Admittedly, it was not easy to let go emotionally. But I know it is the right thing to do. I made mistakes, and I must take responsibility.

This is best for our community, for Binance, and for myself. Binance is no longer a baby. It is time for me to let it walk and run. I know Binance will continue to grow and excel with the deep bench it has.

I’m pleased to announce that Richard Teng, our now former Global Head of Regional Markets, has been named the new CEO of Binance today. Richard is a highly qualified leader and, with over three decades of financial services and regulatory experience, he will navigate the company through its next period of growth. He will ensure Binance delivers on our next phase of security, transparency, compliance, and growth. Prior to joining Binance, Richard was CEO of the Financial Services Regulatory Authority at Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM); Chief Regulatory Officer of the Singapore Exchange (SGX); and Director of Corporate Finance in the Monetary Authority of Singapore. With Richard and the entire team, I’m confident that the best days for Binance and the crypto industry lay ahead. As a shareholder and former CEO with historical knowledge of our company, I will remain available to the team to consult as needed, consistent with the framework set out in our U.S. agency resolutions.

What’s next for me? I will take a break first. I have not had a single day of real (phone off) break for the last 6 and half years.”

Why did Binance CEO, Changpeng Zhao, step down

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) was on 27 March 2023, filed a lawsuit against Binance and it CEO, Zhao, in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, claiming willful evasion of US law and allegedly breaching derivatives rules. The agency also accused Binance of breaking rules intended to thwart money laundering operations, pointing to internal communications describing transactions by Palestinian militant organization Hamas, and suspected criminals.

Also, in June 2023, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said it was suing Zhao and Binance on 13 charges for alleged violations of US securities rules.

In November 2023, Zhao agreed to resign from Binance and pay a $50 million fine as part of a guilty plea in US federal charges. Binance also agreed to plead guilty, and to pay $4.3 billion in fines. Zhao was replaced as CEO by Richard Teng.

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