Executive Resignations Shake Binance Amid Legal and Regulatory Challenges
Several executives have recently resigned from Binance, the world's largest cryptocurrency exchange, as the company faces legal and regulatory obstacles. Chief Strategy Officer Patrick Hillmann announced his departure on Thursday, citing personal reasons in a tweet. Steven Christie, a compliance executive who joined Binance in May 2022, also tweeted on Friday about his resignation, mentioning exhaustion and the need to focus on personal well-being.
According to reports from Fortune and Bloomberg News, General Counsel Hon Ng has also left the company, as confirmed by an anonymous source. Additionally, Binance's U.S.-based Chief Business Officer Yibo Ling has reportedly departed, as stated in Bloomberg's report.
Binance has not yet responded to requests for comment on the resignations, and both Ng and Ling have not immediately replied to inquiries from Reuters via LinkedIn messages.
Last month, the U.S. regulatory authorities filed a lawsuit against Binance and its CEO Changpeng Zhao, accusing them of operating a deceptive scheme. Binance has declared its strong intent to vigorously defend itself against these allegations.
Furthermore, Binance is currently under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice for potential money laundering and sanctions violation issues, as previously reported by Reuters.
According to Fortune, citing an insider source at Binance, the resignations may be related to Zhao's response to the Justice Department's probe. However, Reuters has not independently verified this information.
In response to the developments, Changpeng Zhao, a billionaire and influential figure in the crypto industry, tweeted on Friday, acknowledging turnover at every company but stating that the reasons attributed by the media were entirely incorrect.
Patrick Hillmann, who initially joined Binance in 2021 as the company's top communications executive, took on the role of Chief Strategy Officer in October of the following year. He had been an outspoken advocate for Binance on social media and highlighted the company's ability to navigate industry crises and regulatory challenges, fostering growth and success.