Binance Is Coming Back to China as a Blockchain Education Platform

One of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, Binance, has returned to China despite the all-out ban on digital asset trading in the country. However, as the company’s newest Chinese website showed, it won’t be entering the market as an exchange, but rather as an educational platform.

On Monday, public records revealed that the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology approved a domain name for Binance earlier in April—binance.cn. A Shanghai-based company called Shanghai Bi Nai Shi Information Technology LLC was the one that submitted the registration. 

According to a report from Chinese crypto media outlet ChainNews, the only legal representative of the company listed in the documents has two other companies registered under his name. All of the companies, ChainNews found, were registered in the past three months and all have names that, when pronounced in Chinese, sound very similar to Binance.

Binance’s Chinese website went live earlier this week but is yet to feature any trading related content 

        Screengrab showing the homepage of Binance’s newly launched Chinese website. (Source: Binance China)

According to the limited content on the website, it seems that Binance is re-entering the Chinese market with a focus on blockchain technology rather than providing an exchange platform. The homepage of the website says that Binance China is “the leading blockchain system establisher in the world.”

It also seems that the company will mostly be focused on providing blockchain courses to users and businesses in China. 

Aside from the educational effort, the company will also begin offering other services to the burgeoning blockchain market in China, including developing blockchain technology, research and consulting services, blockchain startup incubation, a talent scouting service, blockchain charities, and Binance Chain. 

All of this is in line with the company’s new focus on education. Earlier in March, Binance Academy, the exchange’s non-profit educational subsidiary, announced that it has established a research institute aimed at researching and developing blockchain technology in China.

Focusing on development and education is also in line with China’s overall plan for “blockchainifying” its tech sector. The country has been pouring huge resources into establishing blockchain committees, blockchain networks, and various other independent and government-led entities focused on the technology.

In a response to Dovey Wan, the founding partner at Primitive Ventures, who shared the news on her Twitter account, the CEO of Binance confirmed that the exchange was indeed coming back to China in the role of a blockchain educator.

“One step at a time. Let’s focus on education and technology first,” Changpeng Zhao said. 

One step at a time. Let's focus on education and technology first.

— CZ Binance (@cz_binance) May 19, 2020

While many celebrated Binance’s return to China as a big step both for the company and for the crypto industry as a whole, some saw this as an alarming case of centralization of blockchain technology. 

Larry Cerman, the director of research at The Block, said this was most likely the case of Binance pandering to the Chinese regime when asked whether or not Binance would open an office in China. 

“And considering more than 60% of Binance employees are Chinese, I don’t think they have much of a choice. Binance is a predominantly Chinese company,” he said

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