On Friday, Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange by trading volume, stated that it doesn’t have the ownership of India-based platform WazirX despite announcing the acquisition two and a half years ago. Changpeng Zhao, founder, and chief executive of Binance, said in a series of tweets that the company has been “trying to conclude the deal for the past few years,” but hasn’t completed the transaction yet citing “a few issues” that he declined to elaborate.


Binance and WazirX Announced the Acquisition Deal in 2019


Binance announced acquiring the ownership of WazirX in late 2019 in a blog post. The official blog post, which carried a picture of Zhao and WazirX founders, also featured the Binance executive’s enthusiasm about the deal. “The acquisition of WazirX shows our commitment and dedication to the Indian people and strengthens the blockchain ecosystem in India as well as another step forward in achieving the freedom of money,” the 2019 post cited him as saying.


WazirX also reported that it had been “successfully acquired by Binance” in a separate blog post. Zhao said on Friday that Binance does not “own any equity in Zanmai Labs,” the entity operating WazirX and established by the original founders. “On 21 Nov 2019, the crypto exchange platform published a blog post that it had ‘acquired’ WazirX. This transaction was never completed. Binance has never – at any point – owned any shares of Zanmai Labs, the entity operating WazirX,” he wrote.


India’s Watchdog Froze WazirX’s Assets Worth Over $8 Million


“Binance only provides wallet services for WazirX as a tech solution. There is also integration using off-chain tx, to save on network fees. WazirX is responsible for all other aspects of the WazirX exchange, including user sign-up, KYC, trading, and initiating withdrawals,” he added. The clarification follows India’s Enforcement Directorate’s freezing of WazirX’s assets worth over $8 million, citing suspected violation of foreign exchange rule.


“Recent allegations about the operation of WazirX and how the platform is managed by Zanmai Labs are of deep concern to Binance. The crypto exchange company collaborates with law enforcement agencies all around the world. We would be happy to work with ED in any way possible,” Zhao added.


Read more: India Plans to Use its Vast Reach to Influence Mergers and Acquisition Deals Overseas


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