Crypto hiring: Binance loses APAC head, M^Zero poaches Circle exec

Crypto exchanges like Binance and Coinbase have shed employees at various points during the year


Drazen Zigic/Shutterstock modified by Blockworks


Cryptocurrency exchanges continued to have staffing shake ups after Indian exchange CoinDCX cut 12% of its employees last week. 

This week, Binance lost its Asia-Pacific head Leon Foong, and CoinSwitch, another India-based crypto exchange, laid off 44 customer support employees.

Binance confirmed to Blockworks on Thursday that Foong left Binance but declined to offer any other details. Bloomberg reported the news early Thursday morning.

This comes as Binance is executing plans to expand into Japan. The world’s largest crypto exchange has a goal to list at least 100 tokens on its Japanese platform, according to a Bloomberg report.

Foong was on the record In May 2022 about the need for clearer regulatory guidelines in India. This was especially relevant at the time because India was in the process of instituting a flat 30% tax on profits derived from crypto

On the subject of a possible audit, Foong told Bloomberg in February 2023 that a full check of Binance’s assets and liabilities was far off. 

He said traditional accounting firms don’t have a solid understanding of crypto, which was the main reason for the delay. 

To date, Binance hasn’t been fully audited. Mazars had been auditing the world’s largest crypto exchange in December 2022 but abruptly announced it would immediately halt working with its crypto clients, including Binance. 

M^Zero Labs makes key hires

Four individuals from well-known companies are joining M^Zero Labs, a startup whose aim is to build a decentralized infrastructure network to “permissionlessly mint currencies.”

One of the most valuable hires for the company is João Reginatto, an eight-year veteran at Circle. Reginatto was the leader of the project that built USDC, which now gives M^Zero unlimited access to one of the foremost experts on stablecoin development. 

Reginatto is joining M^Zero as chief strategy officer and will lead go-to-market efforts.

Months after M^Zero raised $22.5 million in a seed round from Pantera Capital, the company hired former Coinbase associate general counsel Thor Mathison to serve as its general counsel.

Other notable hires

  • Standard Chartered’s digital asset spinoff Zodia Custody hired Jonathan Hugh as its new chief financial officer roughly four months after it raised $36 million in fresh funding.
  • Triple-A, a crypto payment gateway based in Singapore, appointed Paulo Shargorodsky as general manager where he’ll focus on growth in Americas.

Start your day with top crypto insights from David Canellis and Katherine Ross. Subscribe to the Empire newsletter.

Explore the growing intersection between crypto, macroeconomics, policy and finance with Ben Strack, Casey Wagner and Felix Jauvin. Subscribe to the On the Margin newsletter.

The Lightspeed newsletter is all things Solana, in your inbox, every day. Subscribe to daily Solana news from Jack Kubinec and Jeff Albus.


Upcoming Events

Salt Lake City, UT

MON - TUES, OCT. 7 - 8, 2024

Blockworks and Bankless in collaboration with buidlbox are excited to announce the second installment of the Permissionless Hackathon – taking place October 7-8 in Salt Lake City, Utah. We’ve partnered with buidlbox to bring together the brightest minds in crypto for […]

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research



Aerodrome is a "MetaDEX" that combines elements of various DEX primitives such as Uniswap V2 and V3, Curve, Convex, and Votium. Since its launch on Base, it has become the largest protocol by TVL with more than $495M in value locked, doubling Uniswap's Base deployment.


The SEC has signaled a timeline to issuers that could lead to a July 23 launch for the ETH funds, people close to the process told Blockworks


PayPal has unequivocally made a name for itself as a crypto adopter among fintech giants


Also, a look into how the highly-debated SAB 121 could end up shaking out for crypto custodians


Vance, an Ohio Republican, is largely seen as crypto-friendly


Plus, all the world is green as prices across the crypto space rally, with solana reaching a nearly two-week high


Investors add to crypto positions after “turnaround in sentiment due to lower-than-expected CPI,” CoinShares research head says