On October 8, Binance, the largest cryptocurrency exchange, stated on its blog that the listing fee for new coins would be called “donation” and transferred to charity, which is associated with financial assistance in developing blockchain startups. This is not the only case when the Chinese crypto platform allocated its assets to technology development. What are the goals that Binance pursues by doing so?
Expensive Listing Turns into Charity
The listing fee is a sore subject for many cryptocurrency projects, as it costs too much. According to Bloomberg data for April, the fee for inclusion in the list of digital assets ranges from $1 million to $3 million. This is almost 10 times more than the fee required in fiat currency for listing on a classical stock exchange.
Previously, users complained about the largest crypto exchange Binance, as listing fees were several times higher than the cost of the projects themselves. For example, in August 2018, Expanse (a fork of Ethereum) co-founder Christopher Franko wrote on his Twitter account that the exchange, which is now based in Malta, asked for 400 Bitcoins for listing, or $2.5 million. Binance CEO Changphen Zhao denied the accusation and stated that they "don't list shitcoins even if they pay 400 or 4,000 BTC."
Despite disagreement with criticism, Binance did take measures to improve the conditions for the inclusion of crypto assets on the list or at least made a gesture towards charity. Now, all commissions for listing new tokens will be sent to finance research initiatives. As soon as the parties to the negotiations reach an agreement, the exchange will begin to transfer assets to the Blockchain Charity Foundation.
At the same time, the projects will be able to offer the contribution amount themselves. Henceforth, the exchange does not intend to dictate acceptable minimums for entering the market. In its statement, Binance also promised full transparency in listing and maintaining high standards in the selection of tokens. The exchanges regularly control even the coins previously included in the trade list. If they do not comply with the standards of the exchange, Binance removes the tokens from its market. On Friday, October 12, a large-scale delisting of all trading pairs with Bytecoin, Iconomi, ChatCoin, and Triggers took place “in order to protect users” from scams.
Other high-quality coins are being tested and successfully enter the list of coins traded on the popular exchange. For example, in the near future (approximately in 2019), it is planned that the BIP cryptocurrency of the Minter project will go through all the selection and verification procedures and begin successful trading on the Binance exchange.
Investing in Technology Development
This year, Binance began to actively participate in donations for good purposes, in particular, for the modernization of blockchain technology. In his Twitter, Changpeng Zhao wrote about his hopes that other exchanges would follow the same path and start transferring money to innovation development funds.
Launched in the summer of 2018, the Binance Labs blockchain incubator plans to provide support to companies in the field of blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies. The fund includes cryptocurrency projects operating on the exchange and functions to empower entrepreneurs and companies. The proceeds from the reserve funds will be distributed in several stages and amount to more than $1 billion.
On October 8, it became known that the laboratory had invested a certain amount (about several million dollars, according to Coindesk) in a project to audit CertiK smart contracts. Launched last year, the startup is checking software codes of blockchain projects for vulnerabilities.
“CertiK mathematically validates the security of smart contracts, which is a critical pain point we are facing in the blockchain ecosystem, bypassing the limitations of manual detection,” said Ella Zhang, head of Binance Labs, after concluding the agreement.
Earlier, on October 2, the laboratory invested in the Contentos decentralized project for the development of digital content. The project plans to upgrade monetization, authentication, and copyright management systems. At the moment, the blockchain platform has launched three products: LiveMe, PhotoGrid, and Cheez.
The head of Binance Labs, Ella Zhang, reiterated the company's position and highlighted the goal of identifying real-life cases using blockchain technologies. "There are a number of problems in the content creation industry, and we see that the right team has gathered at Contentos with the right resources to solve them."
As a result, the fund will identify 20 projects that, according to experts, will be the most promising and necessary for the development of the technology. The size of the assets managed by the companies participating in the new fund must be at least $100 million. Binance will invest in these funds using its own BNB token.
“We believe it's a disruptive social experiment. Binance Labs hopes to work with more aspirational projects to explore blockchain applications and together move forward the growth of the industry,” said Ella Zhang and added that neither the exchange nor the foundation will stop on the achieved goals and will continue to work on integrating blockchain systems.