New Binance CEO Richard Teng Addresses Compliance Issues in First Interview

Ruholamin Haqshanas
Last updated: | 2 min read
Image Source: Binance

Richard Teng, the newly appointed CEO of Binance, has faced a challenging debut during his first public interview. 

In an interview at the Financial Times’ Crypto and Digital Assets Summit in London, the crypto boss acknowledged that Binance’s compliance systems had been inadequate in the past, admitting to mistakes. 

However, Teng, who has held senior positions at Binance for several years, avoided giving direct answers about the company’s governance.

During the interview, conducted remotely via video with moderator Scott Chipolina, The Financial Times’ digital assets correspondent, Teng evaded straightforward questions about Binance. 

Chipolina repeatedly asked about Binance’s global headquarters, the possibility of an audit, the number of employees, and the company’s application for a license in the UK. 

Teng seemed unwilling to provide clear answers, frustrating Chipolina.

“I’ve asked you where Binance’s global headquarters is, I’ve asked you whether Binance is going to undergo an audit, how many employees the company currently has on its books and whether you’re applying for a license in the UK, which is what Binance told us during our last FT crypto conference. You haven’t answered those questions.”

Teng, seemingly losing patience, insisted that he had answered each question. 

However, when asked once again about Binance’s headquarters, he responded, “It is under consideration.”

Even when questioned about the future of Binance and the changes the company would undergo under new leadership, Teng remained vague, stating that “a lot of things will change” before diverting to a discussion about the industry landscape.

Teng Succeeded CZ Following DOJ Settlement

Teng assumed the position of CEO a few weeks ago, succeeding Changpeng “CZ” Zhao following the settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice. 

The exchange had been accused of violating sanctions and money-transmitting laws. 

In his interview, Teng began with a prepared statement, admitting that mistakes had been made and acknowledging the inadequacy of Binance’s compliance control given its size. 

He stated that going forward, the exchange aims to be both “user-led” and “compliance-led.”

When pressed about the possibility of an audit, Teng claimed that as a private company not raising funds publicly, Binance is not obligated to disclose such information.

He mentioned that the auditors possess the necessary details but avoided naming a specific auditor when asked. 

As reportedTeng has hinted at the exchange’s ability to pay the $4.3 billion it has been fined by the US Justice Department. 

Teng, who was named CEO of Binance on Tuesday after Changpeng Zhao stepped down, said in a recent post on X (formerly Twitter) that the exchange is in good shape financially. 

The statement came in reply to a post by Connor Lango, director of business development at Coinbase, who said Binance will most likely be able to “pay full $4.3B DoJ fine with 0 crypto asset sales.”