• Singapore’s monetary authorities have placed the Binance mothership on an investor alert list warning consumers that the entity is not registered in the city state
  • This is an entirely different entity from Binance.sg, run by a Singapore registered company, that has an exemption to operate from the payments

One of Binance’s many named subsidiaries has found itself in the crosshairs of Singapore’s monetary authority ⁠— potentially threatening the exchange’s move to the city

During the Thursday business day in Asia, the Monetary Authority of Singapore has said that Binance may be in breach of local laws surrounding payments, and placed the exchange’s Binance.com entity on a watch list. 

The operator of Binance.com may be in breach of the Payment Services Act for carrying on the business of providing payment services to, and soliciting such business from Singapore residents without an appropriate license,” the authority said in a release. 

But confusingly, the entity targeted isn’t Binance-Singapore. Binance, which insists on being everywhere but calling nowhere home, has dozens of subsidiaries around the world on markets where it operates a localized version. These versions aren’t as complete as the Binance mothership, but try and conform to local laws and regulations so they have access to local payment rails. Recently, as an example, regulators in the UK have gone after Binance’s UK branch and the Thai SEC has filed a criminal complaint against Binance Thailand.  

Binance.sg, is run by Binance Asia Services Pte Ltd, one of the exchange’s many registered companies in Singapore. Binance Asia Services currently has an exemption from Singapore’s Monetary Authority from having a licence under the country’s Payment Services Act. But Binance.sg only has a fraction of the available tokens to trade that the Binance mothership has, with only bitcoin, ether, and BNB listed. 

Earlier in August, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao tweeted that the exchange was pivoting from “reactive compliance to proactive compliance.” 

  • Blockworks
    Sam Reynolds is a Taipei-based reporter, covering digital assets and regulation throughout Asia. Before joining Blockworks he was an editor at Forkast News and an analyst with IDC.