Binance chief strategy officer says departure is ‘on good terms’

Binance loses chief strategy officer amid tight scrutiny from US agencies, but the former exec says it has more to do with personal reasons.

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Binance chief strategy officer Patrick Hillmann has confirmed his departure from the embattled crypto exchange.

Hillman’s response on social media appears to address reports which said he, along with two other Binance executives, were leaving due to CEO Changpeng Zhao’s response to ongoing investigations by the US Department of Justice (DOJ).

Instead, Hillmann said the time was right to step aside citing the imminent birth of his second child. Blockworks has reached out to Hillmann.

“I continue to respect and support [Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao] and am grateful for having had the incredible opportunity to work under his leadership,” Hillmann tweeted.

General counsel Hon Ng and SVP for compliance Steven Christie were named as the other executives calling it quits. Binance is yet to respond to Blockworks’ questions regarding the nature of their departure.

The DOJ probed Binance on its policies for tackling illegal finances in December 2020, soliciting close to 30 requests for internal documents over concerns the exchange had failed to act on illegal activity.

Binance, along with Zhao, Binance.US’s operator Bam Trading and Binance.US were then charged by the SEC in June. The charges include alleged securities violations and commingling of funds, among others.

Earlier in February, Hillmann claimed Binance’s US affiliate was working with regulators to resolve disputes over its subsidiary’s dealings following additional investigations. 

The executive said Binance would “likely” pay fines as a result, though it appears that has not yet materialized.

Hillmann’s departure ends a roughly two-year stint at the exchange, according to his Linkedin page. Prior to his work at Binance, Hillmann was the head of innovation, risk and compliance at public relations firm Edelman.

“I’ve been here for two years and it’s simply time for me to move on to the next challenge. I’ve taken this company through a lifetime of industry crises and regulatory challenges — from Luna to 3AC to FTX,” Hillman tweeted.


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