Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by volume, has announced that its French subsidiary has been approved as a Digital Asset Service Provider (DASP) by the country’s financial markets and banking regulator.
The firm is now a registered digital asset service provider with the French stock market regulator AMF, allowing it to provide Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency trading and custody services.
Binance receives green light in France
The nod from the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) and the Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Résolution (ACPR), France’s regulatory bodies for financial markets, came as Binance’s first approval to operate in Europe. Meanwhile, the crypto exchange is the world’s largest exchange by volume and is the first major global crypto exchange to set up shop in France.
According to the AMF, registration requires checks to ensure that the managers and beneficial owners have a good reputation and competence and compliance with anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism laws. Following the registration approval, the exchange stated that it would “significantly scale” its operations in France.
Binance is the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, handling spot trading volumes of more than $14 billion and around $50 billion in derivatives volume in a single day, according to data from CoinGecko.
France is the first major European country to approve the exchange’s registration, making it the first of its kind. The Lithuanian anti-money laundering authorities regulate the company. It is also applying for certification with Sweden’s finance authorities.
The registration of Binance France as a DASP is a key milestone for crypto in Europe. In particular, the new levels of protection for AML will help grow crypto adoption in France and Europe. Greater adoption will help bring better liquidity to the market, which will be welcomed by users and the community in particular.
David Princay, CEO of Binance France.
At this time last year, the exchange was facing regulatory difficulties in various jurisdictions across the world, with a particular focus on Europe. Last summer, financial regulatory authorities urged customers to be wary of the exchange.
In July, the Italian securities authority determined that Binance is not qualified to provide investment services and activities in Italy. In August, the Dutch central bank stated that the crypto exchange did not have the required legal authorization to offer services in the Netherlands. Additionally, The Financial Conduct Authority also poured cold water on a planned U.K. arm called Binance Markets Limited, which has since stood stagnant.
Given a choice between battling regulatory obstacles and allowing the wind to carry them, Binance has chosen the latter in most cases.
Compliance and regulation are critical factors for the success of the crypto and blockchain industry. Over the years, Binance has taken measures to ensure compliance, including growing our international compliance team and advisory board and actively helping to fight fraud and ransomware. We are pleased that our efforts have paid off and met stringent French compliance standards to obtain the DASP registration successfully.
Paris to soon become a home for the crypto exchange
Binance has no permanent headquarters, and it used to take pleasure in this fact. However, Binance is now attempting to make amends with regulators following a backlash from authorities across several nations last year, including the U.K., Italy, and Singapore. Binance’s CEO and founder, Changpeng Zhao, told CNBC last month that the firm intends to shop in Paris.
Binance has been on a charm offensive in France. Zhao delivered a keynote at the Paris Cryptocurrency & Blockchain Event last month, announcing a new Web3 start-up accelerator program. The company also announced plans to invest 100 million euros ($105 million) in the country.
During the Paris Blockchain Week Summit in April, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao said that France has one of the most progressive and open-minded governments when it comes to regulating blockchain technology.
In our interactions with them, they are far more advanced in their understanding, and they’re also much more progressive in their attitudes. France is a very strict regulator. But they have the advanced understandings to go with that.
Binance is preparing to transform Paris into its European headquarters, with Changpeng Zhao (CZ), the firm’s founder and CEO, calling for robust regulation in the industry. He also stated that having a G-7 country with a tight regulator sends a powerful message to the others. Meanwhile, Binance has announced that it is expanding its staff in France to develop the infrastructure further.
Binance’s entry into France is the company’s latest internationalization push, having received in-principle approval to operate in Abu Dhabi in April. In March, regulators in the Middle East gave the exchange permission to provide services in Bahrain and Dubai. The major cryptocurrency exchange has no physical headquarters at this time, but it is reportedly going to pick a site “very soon,” apparently in an attempt to satisfy regulators.