Sunday, June 16, 2024

Two early birds of Binance to have caught the worm

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Binance Labs, the crypto exchange’s venture capital and incubator arm, has lost two prominent employees in recent weeks.

Bill Qian, the CEO of the crypto exchange, is expected to leave the company soon, according to numerous people familiar with the situation. According to her LinkedIn page, Nicole Zhang, the firm’s executive director, quit last month.

Qian’s move was verified by a representative of the exchange, who said:

“We don’t comment on people moves at Binance as a matter of policy. However, we can confirm that Bill is leaving Binance for personal reasons.”

Zhang’s resignation was also verified by another spokesman from the firm.

The crypto exchange employed both executives for more than two years. According to his LinkedIn page, Qian joined Binance Labs in March 2020 after spending more than five years as the head of investment at China’s JD Group.

As can be seen in the Binance-Forbes agreement announcement from February, Qian, a Chinese national, reportedly changed his surname to Chin. His prior LinkedIn profile with the surname Qian is no longer active. His Twitter account appears to have been erased as well.

Qian did not respond immediately to the media, Zhang, on the other hand, started as executive director of the crypto exchange in April 2020, according to her LinkedIn profile. According to her LinkedIn page, she is now a partner at fintech-focused venture capital firm Lingfeng Capital, where she manages the firm’s, Innovation Fund.

Binance’s first outside capital
Binance Labs raised its first fund with outside cash earlier this week, and Qian and Zhang’s exits coincide with that. DST Global Partners, Breyer Capital, and undisclosed institutional investors helped the company raise $500 million.

Binance Labs was established in 2018 and has been investing its own funds since then. To date, Axie Infinity creator Sky Mavis, move-to-earn business StepN, decentralised exchange aggregator 1inch, and blockchain audit firm CertiK have all received funding from the firm.

Furthermore, this firm manages mergers and acquisitions in addition to investing. The company has made more than a dozen acquisitions, including CoinMarketCap, an Indian crypto market, and DappReview, a decentralized application analytics platform.

It’s unknown who will take Qian’s and Zhang’s places. According to the company’s website, Ken Li and Peter Huo are now serving as directors of Binance Labs.

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