Binance is branching out – at least according to a recent Financial Times report. The world’s largest crypto exchange is planning a mergers and acquisitions spree into new markets amid ongoing regulatory scrutiny.
According to Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao, they “want to identify and invest in one or two targets in every economic sector and try to bring them into crypto.” The enigmatic exchange founder thinks that pushing a company in the media industry to embrace crypto will lead others to follow.
The report added that Binance’s core business – which is profiting from crypto transaction fees – is coming under increasing pressure from policymakers around the world that want to regulate the industry.
Zhao stated that the firm was hiring a team of compliance and enforcement professionals to address the issue. It has also begun to utilize customer-checking software used by banks and demand rafts of additional KYC (know-your-customer) documents from its users. Binance has 70 employees in the UK that are focused on regulatory issues, he added.
The United Kingdom has been a particular bane for the company as its Financial Conduct Authority has come down hard on the exchange, forcing it to cease operations in the country last year.
The FCA has expressed concerns over Binance’s partnership with payments platform Paysafe, which acts as a fiat on/off-ramp. Earlier this month, the company launched its own fiat-to-crypto payments provider Bifinity.
Binance is also working on a deal that could see it take full control of a struggling Singaporean finance firm, Eqonex. The firm is the parent company of digital assets custody company Digivault, one of the few that is registered with the British regulator.
READ ALSO: Binance, Coinbase Under Pressure To Freeze Russians’ Cryptocurrency Over Global Financial SanctionsAs part of its expansion strategy, Binance has also invested $200 million in U.S. business magazine Forbes. There were no mentions of other sectors for expansion, and the moves appear to be limited to the media industry at the moment.
Binance’s native BNB token is trading down 4.3% on the day at $385, according to CoinGecko. The token has not escaped the wider crypto market slump, having lost 11% over the past month. Additionally, BNB is down 43% from its May 10 all-time high of $686.
There are currently 168 million tokens in circulation, giving it a market cap of $65 billion and a rank of 4 in the coin cap charts.