WazirX Calls Binance Allegations 'False and Misleading,' Plans to Seek Recourse

Binance had given WazirX an ultimatum to retract what it called false public statements or stop using Binance's wallets.

AccessTimeIconFeb 7, 2023 at 2:47 p.m. UTC
Updated May 9, 2023 at 4:07 a.m. UTC

Indian cryptocurrency exchange WazirX has said "allegations made by Binance in their blog are false and unsubstantiated," and that with respect to Binance's actions it is taking the necessary steps to seek recourse and protect its legal rights, according to its own blog post published on Tuesday.

The spat between Binance and Zanmai Labs, the Singapore-based parent of WazirX, is about which company truly controls the Indian exchange. The internal dispute became public in August 2022 when Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao tweeted Binance didn't control WazirX, resulting in WazirX co-founder Nischal Shetty hitting back later.

In the months since then, both parties were in private discussions to work out the ownership issue, said Shetty, in order to ensure customer funds wouldn't become collateral damage.

On Jan. 26, Binance gave WazirX an ultimatum to retract what it called a "false and misleading narrative" or stop using Binance's wallets by Feb. 3, CoinDesk reported at the time.

In a blog post on Feb. 3, however, Binance said it was making an exception and inviting WazirX to "work out arrangements to withdraw any remaining assets in the relevant accounts." The solution ostensibly ended worries about what would happen to customer funds if Binance and WazirX end their collaboration, given that WazirX disclosed that 90% of its user assets are held in Binance wallets.

Later, on Feb. 3, WazirX said it had begun the process of transferring assets to multisignature wallets, and that it expects the process to be completed "within the next few hours."

In Tuesday's blog, and with the process of transferring funds apparently over, WazirX said its "users do not have to be concerned about Binance’s announcement."

"We have made arrangements to ensure that WazirX’s digital assets are stored in accordance with industry-leading standards. Users can continue to trade, deposit, and withdraw their funds as usual."

Binance didn't immediately respond to CoinDesk's request for comment.

UPDATE (Feb. 7, 15:20 UTC): Added additional background and context.


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Amitoj Singh

Amitoj Singh is CoinDesk's regulatory reporter covering India. He holds BTC and ETH below CoinDesk's disclosure threshold of $1,000.

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