Based on incoming reports, Sakura Exchange Bitcoin Company (SEBC) announced plans to launch a new service, Binance Japan, after June 23.
The Provisional Binance Japan service will replace SEBC’s current exchange services, which will close by May 31. The SEBC release dated April 28 did not share further details about the new service. However, the statement noted that after June 23, Binance Japan would offer cryptocurrency services.
Based on reports, those with SEBC accounts will not be automatically transferred to Binance. No KYC identity data will be carried forward. Instead, the new Binance Japan will require users to perform new KYC.
Originally, Binance was unable to offer account opening options for Japanese residents. It is now unclear whether Japanese residents will still have access to Binance Global after the launch of Binance Japan.
Further reports indicate that the SEBC currently only hosts around 11 pairs of crypto assets. Binance Japan must get vetted and approved by the Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association to list a single pair.
These new developments began after the Binance Network acquired the SEBC last November.
Binance’s entry into Japan has been full of regulatory struggles. Regulators have warned Binance Exchange of illegally operating in Japan on several occasions. In March 2018, Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) warned Binance for illegally engaging Japanese residents.
Later in 2021, the FSA reiterated that Binance is operating in the country without registration. Reports indicate that a virtual currency exchange must obtain business registration and approval from FSA before operating in Japan.
Japanese regulators have imposed very strict regulations against crypto exchanges to protect investors. Reports highlight that an exchange must store its assets in cold wallets, while customers’ fiat should remain in a bank trust or Japanese trust company.
Is Binance creating a monopoly?
Following the recent events connected to Binance, there have been several questions about whether the exchange aims to become a monopoly. FUD fueled in December 2022 alleged that Binance was the biggest gainer of FTX’s collapse.
There were titles like “Binance… becoming the Amazon of crypto” and “Binance inches closer to illegal monopoly status” from different publications.
Binance continuous expansion to new territory could continue feeding such insinuations of its monopoly status. However, other analysts believe the expansion benefits crypto despite the monopoly questions.