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Binance Strengthens Japanese Presence, Acquires a Locally Regulated Exchange

Crypto exchange Binance announced the acquisition of Sakura Exchange BitCoin (SEBC) for an undisclosed sum. The latter is a Japanese crypto exchange that is regulated by the country’s Financial Services Agency (FSA).

The latest development comes just months after reports of Binance preparing for a formal entry to the Japanese market surfaced. The crypto exchange sought a permit to operate in the country after its exit nearly four years ago.

  • It is important to note that the FSA issued a warning that said Binance is not registered to do business in Japan last summer.
  • A similar warning came from the regulator in March 2018 as well, which subsequently pushed the platform to cease its operations and plans to unveil a headquarter in the country.
  • During that time, Binance CEO CZ Zhao assured that the exchange was in “constructive dialogues” with the regulator over the matter.
  • Hence, the latest acquisition of the Tokyo-based exchange, SEBC, can be viewed as a win for the crypto exchange, which boasts the largest trading volume in the world.
  • In a statement, Binance Japan General Manager Takeshi Chino said,

“The Japanese market will play a key role in the future of cryptocurrency adoption. As one of the world’s leading economies with a highly-developed tech ecosystem, it’s already poised for strong blockchain uptake. We will actively work with regulators to develop our combined exchange in a compliant way for local users. We are eager to help Japan take a leading role in crypto.”

  • So far, the CZ-led firm has acquired regulatory approvals or authorizations in France, Italy, Spain, Bahrain, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, New Zealand, Kazakhstan, Poland, Lithuania, and Cyprus.
  • Binance was hit by a raft of regulatory challenges worldwide last year, making its expansion journey rather bumpier for the better part of 2022.
  • To beef up compliance, Binance hired Steven McWhirter and Seth Levy, former regulators from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), respectively, in April this year to help the crypto exchange meet its regulatory obligations.

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