Binance will finally establish a global HQ as regulatory pressure mounts, chief Richard Teng says

Binance will finally establish a global HQ as regulatory pressure mounts, chief Richard Teng says
Binance CEO Richard Teng (left) said he still doesn't know where the company will establish its home base. Credit: Andrés Tapia
Dispatch from Paris Blockchain Week
  • Crypto exchange has long resisted basing itself anywhere.
  • Teng is labouring to minimise Binance's regulatory problems.
  • Crises in Nigeria and Philippines are mounting.

Breaking with its long standing policy of being based nowhere, Binance is in the process of establishing a global headquarters, CEO Richard Teng said Tuesday.

“We are speaking to a few jurisdictions, a few are under consideration,” Teng said during an on-stage interview at the Paris Blockchain Week conference.

The change comes as Binance, the world’s top crypto exchange, has come under fire in multiple markets for failing to obtain operating licences and comply with regulations.

Nigerian crisis

Earlier this year, the Philippines blocked Binance from operating after the company failed to comply with licencing requirements.

In March, Nigerian authorities charged Binance with money laundering and tax violations and incarcerated Tigran Gambaryan, a US-based compliance executive, in prison pending his trial.

Binance has protested Gambaryan’s detainment and called the allegations against him “meritless.

“Our utmost priority is to do what we can to bring him home as soon as possible,” Teng said in Paris on Tuesday. The company is working closely with the Nigerian authorities to resolve the issue, he added.

When pressed for further details on the Nigerian crisis, Teng declined. “I think we have really discussed enough of this subject matter. Let’s move on,” he said.

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Establishing a home base has long been a point of contention at Binance, even before Teng took over last November.

In 2019, co-founder and then-CEO Changpeng Zhao said that headquarters and offices were “old concepts” and that “that time is moving on.”

At a finance conference in London last fall, Teng bristled at questions about where the company was actually based. “Why do you feel so entitled to these answers?” he said during a video-linked interview.

Unorthodox ways

Binance’s disregard for orthodox corporate practices and regulations caught up with it in 2023.

In November, the company pleaded guilty to violating US banking law by facilitating crypto transactions for sanctioned entities such as terrorist organisations and paid a $4.3 billion penalty. Zhao, who also pleaded guilty, resigned as CEO.

Teng, a onetime director of corporate finance at Singapore’s central bank, has experience in regulatory roles.

At Binance, he has vowed to install proper anti-money laundering and know-your-customer policies and comply with regulations.

Under the terms of Binance’s settlement with US authorities, an independent, court-approved monitor is scrutinising Binance’s progress on this front.

Teng appears to be hoping establishing a global HQ will signal that Binance is truly changing its ways.

Yet the details, including the location, remain fuzzy.

“It’s not so easy to pick one because there are a multitude of factors,” said Teng, who is based in Singapore.

That includes how regulations would apply to Binance’s offerings, tax policies, and the ease of hiring and adding staff.

Liam Kelly is DL News’ Berlin correspondent. Contact him at

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