The largest crypto exchange in the world leaves Russia. The largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world, Binance, announced on Wednesday that it would be selling its Russian operations to a newly established “community exchange” and leaving the country entirely.
Binance’s announcement follows allegations that the U.S. Justice Department was investigating the company for potential violations of war-related sanctions on Moscow.
“Binance has agreed to sell the entirety of its Russia business,” the company said in a statement. CommEX, which announced its launch on Tuesday, was identified as the buyer.
“Binance will end all exchange services and business lines in Russia over the next several months,” the company said, adding that it was optimistic about a “smooth” transition. Binance did not disclose the financial parameters of the transaction but emphasized that it would not receive an “ongoing revenue split” or a buyback option.
Binance assured its Russian customers that their assets were “securely protected” and that the transfer to CommEx would take up to a year.
As a result of Western sanctions isolating Russian institutions from global payment networks, more and more Russians are utilizing crypto exchanges.
CommEx has stated that it will not register consumers based in Russia-annexed Crimea, potentially denying Crimean residents access to its services.
Additionally, account registration is unavailable in the United States, the European Union, Iran, Cuba, Syria, and North Korea.
A month before Binance’s withdrawal from Russia, the exchange prohibited Russian users from transacting in all non-ruble currencies.
“As we look ahead, we recognize that operating in Russia is incompatible with Binance’s compliance strategy,” said Noah Perlman, chief compliance officer at Binance.