Changpeng Zhao called it a staff turnover, standard for companies

Binance CEO denies mass layoffs of employees in the United States

07.07.2023 - 08:35


4 min

What’s new? Patrick Hillmann, chief strategy officer, Steven Christie, senior vice president for compliance, and Hon Ng, general counsel, have all left crypto exchange Binance since June, Bloomberg reports. According to LinkedIn, Binance had about 600 employees in the United States, with some being asked to relocate in June after a staff performance review. Those who refused were fired. Among those employees is the company’s chief business officer, Yibo Ling. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao on his Twitter account commented on the departure of senior executives, calling it a staff turnover, standard for all companies.

Bloomberg’s material

What else is known? According to Zhao, the reasons for the layoffs invented by journalists are completely wrong. “As markets and the global environment for crypto changes, as our organization evolves, and as personal situations change,” he explained. The businessman noted that Binance has grown from 30 to 8000 people in six years and remains the largest crypto exchange that “we have been able to protect our users at all times.” Zhao also thanked former team members for their contribution to Binance’s growth and wished them all the best.

Hillman confirmed his departure on Twitter, writing that he was doing so “on good terms.” He stated that he continues “to respect and support Zhao and am grateful for having had the incredible opportunity to work under his leadership.” Hillman explained that he left the company for family reasons.

In late May, Hillman, while still an employee of Binance, denied media reports that the exchange was preparing to lay off 20% of employees worldwide. At that time, he explained that the company conducts an audit of personnel efficiency every six months, which may be followed by reductions and reshuffles, while there is no pre-agreed percentage of employees to be laid off.

In June, the media also reported on mass layoffs of Binance’s senior executives in Europe due to legal complications.

What is going on with Binance? In recent months, Binance has had problems with regulators in jurisdictions around the world. In the US, the global exchange faced a lawsuit from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) for providing services to Americans, and later the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed 13 charges against the global and local platform, including trading in unregistered securities and using customer funds at its discretion.

In June, police raided the exchange’s Paris headquarters in a money-laundering case, and regulators in Britain and Belgium ordered it to shut down local branches. Binance also left the Netherlands after a failed attempt to obtain a license. In addition, EU authorities suspected the company of illegal activities in Malta and Ireland due to incidents related to money laundering and tax evasion.

Brazilian authorities began investigating Binance for possible facilitation of fund transfers by local pyramid schemes.

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