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The world’s largest crypto exchange by market cap, Binance, has set the record straight amid reports that it is considering reviving its licensing plans in Singapore. However, the exchange confirmed that its institutional custody partner, Ceffu, seeks to apply for a crypto custody license in Singapore once the regulator opens the application.

Seeking Singapore’s Custody License

Singapore has emerged as the leading crypto hub due to its friendly tax policies and access to diverse global talent pools in the tech industry. As a result, companies have been seeking official approval to operate within the Asian region.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) plans to open its portal for institutions seeking crypto custody licenses to apply after amending its Payment Services Act. Ceffu, the Binance custody arm, is among the firms seeking to enter the Singaporean market to offer its custody services to institutional customers.

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Ceffu’s vice president, Athena Yu, revealed that the country has a reputation for promoting innovation, transparent corporate governance, and flexible regulatory guidelines. Yu further noted that Ceffu wants to set up shop in Singapore as an institutional custody services provider.

The company awaits the outcomes of the amendments to the country’s Payment Service Act to go live before officially applying with the regulator. A Nikkei publication reveals that Binance rebranded its custodial unit last November by changing its name to “Ceffu” to provide institutional crypto custody services globally.

However, the Nikkei report shows that the exchange has yet to reveal further information about its financial relationship with the rebranded custody arm. Binance reportedly withdrew its crypto license application from Singapore in December 2021 and shut down its operations in February 2022.

Then, the crypto exchange revealed that it withdrew its applications because it has an existing investment in the regulated business in the country. Thus, applying for a second license isn’t logical.

However, a Bloomberg report noted that Binance failed to meet the MAS’s anti-money laundering measures, which was the primary reason for dropping its license applications.

Binance CEO Slams Forbes Over Funds Claim

In a publication earlier this week, the Binance CEO, Changpeng Zhao, has reportedly taken a dig at Forbes over its publication, alleging that the crypto exchange has “shuffled” customer funds. Responding to Forbes publication, Zhao berated Forbes by stating that they do not understand the basics involved in the workings of a crypto exchange.

In his Twitter thread, the CEO addressed several claims by Forbes about Binance’s transfer of $1.8 billion worth of stablecoins to some hedge funds like Tron, Alameda Research, and Amber Group between August and December last year.

Forbes’s article drew similarities between the now-collapsed FTX operations and Binance leading to the demise of the former. The report also cited the failed $1 billion Voyager Digital bid by Binance.US and the ongoing court case between Paxos and the US financial regulator.

Moreover, the Binance boss debunked all allegations in the Forbes article by emphasizing that the crypto exchange has an open-door policy concerning user funds.

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George Ward

By George Ward

George Ward is a crypto journalist and market analyst at Herald Sheets, known for his engaging articles on the latest digital currency trends. With a background in finance and journalism, he presents complex topics accessibly. George holds a degree in Business and Finance from the University of Cambridge.