Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao Gets Into A Verbal Spat With WazirX Founders On Twitter

Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao Gets Into A Verbal Spat With WazirX Founders On Twitter

After the Indian Federal Enforcement Directorate (ED) launched an investigation into WazirX for laundering $350m and froze the Binance-acquired Indian crypto startup’s assets, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao tweeted that the acquisition transaction “was never completed.”

On 21st November 2019, Binance published a blog post that it had “acquired” WazirX – this transaction was never completed,” clarified Zhao. “Binance has never – at any point – owned any shares of Zanmai Labs, the entity operating WazirX.” 

Recently, Zanmai Labs has also come under ED’s purview of investigation. 

However, Nischal Shetty immediately retorted with “facts about WazirX and Binance” and said that WazirX was indeed acquired by Binance as Zanmai Labs has a license from Binance to operate Indian Rupees (INR)- crypto pairs in WazirX.

Zhao Blames WazirX Founders Of Deceptive Word Games

Blaming WazirX founders for playing “deception word games” on Twitter, Zhao revealed that Binance asked for WazirX to transfer the system source code, deployment, and operations, as recently as February this year. “This was refused by WazirX,” stated Zhao. 

Corroborating on this point Shetty revealed that the Binance team wanted control of Zanmai [in February 2022]. He said, “Naturally if Binance desires control of Zanmai, they can acquire shares.”

According to Binance, although WazirX transferred the domain control to Binance, it never received shared access to WazirX AWS account or any control over operations including user sign-up, KYC, trading and initiating withdrawals. 

“This was never transferred, despite our requests. The deal was never closed,” Zhao insisted, stating that WazirX’s founding team, Nischal Shetty and Siddharth Menon, kept the control in their hands.

To this, Shetty replied with the following pointers – 

  • “Binance owns WazirX domain name
  •  Binance has root access to AWS servers
  •  Binance has all the Crypto assets
  •  Binance has all the Crypto profits”

Calling out “incorrect reporting,” Zhao pointed out that Binance only provides wallet services for WazirX as a tech solution. “There is also integration using off-chain tx to save on network fees,” he said. However, he insisted that “WazirX is responsible for all other aspects of the WazirX exchange, including user sign-up, KYC, trading and initiating withdrawals.”

Zhao Offers To Work With ED In Any Way Possible

Acknowledging the charges against WazirX, Zhao said, “Recent allegations about the operation of WazirX and how the platform is managed by Zanmai Labs are of deep concern to Binance.” He added, “Binance collaborates with law enforcement agencies all around the world. We would be happy to work with ED in any way possible.”

“We would love to work with ED to fix these issues in WazirX,” offered Zhao. He added, “WazirX has been uncooperative with us and looks like uncooperative with ED as well.” 

However, Shetty assured that WazirX has been cooperating with ED. 

On the Flipside

  • Several Twitter users are complaining that they aren’t able to withdraw from WazirX due to maintenance issues. 

Why You Should Care

Zhao has openly suggested that “If you have funds on WazirX, you should transfer it to Binance. Simple as that.”

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