CEO of World’s Largest Exchange Binance Says Coinbase and Gemini Are not Competitors


Changpeng “CZ” Zhao sat down with an interview with Fortune Magazine to talk about Ledger's, the future of cryptocurrency and the exchange’s relationship with Coinbase. Some of the prominent topics covered in the discussion are listed below.

On if specialized blockchains will overthrow the current market leaders.

When it comes to dApps, Tezos, EOS, and Dfinity believe that they can overthrow Ethereum, as they promise faster and more efficient protocols.

Zhao thinks otherwise. In his opinion, none of these contenders stand a chance of long-term success, as they are too slow. This might have been long leveled at Ethereum, but CZ isn’t convinced. He says that any blockchain that is designed for general smart contracts will not be swift enough. He firmly believes that the existing blockchains will surrender the field to more specialized ones.

His vision is of a future consisting of many custom ledgers designed for specific purposes. He mentions tools like Komodo and Tendermint, which can create just such custom blockchains.

On Binance’s move to Malta

CZ made a prediction for the future, saying blockchain-based messaging, games, social networks and rating systems will emerge due to higher privacy because of decentralization. Moreover, he believes e-commerce will also move into decentralization. This seems to be the reason for Binance to move into building a financial system which is decentralized in its home country of Malta. This also includes the vision of building a community bank with a decentralized global operation.

He revealed that he preferred working in a country such as Malta, where he can interface directly with one of the heads-of-state. The main aim is to “lay the groundwork” and to “promote the ideals of a decentralized financial system”.

On competition with Coinbase

The crypto billionaire is quite open about other cryptocurrency exchange platforms, one of them being Coinbase. CZ believes that the sea is vast enough for any crypto platform to fish and does not see the need for unhealthy competition. According to him, developed countries can be a bit problematic.

Expanding on this point, he said:

“In developed markets, there’s more money to be made but more regulation and it’s saturated with competition. We don’t want to compete with Coinbase and [Winkelvoss-owned] Gemini. The strategy there requires lots of lawyers and lobbying.”

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