Wei Zhou, the chief financial officer (CFO) of Binance says that the cryptocurrency exchange has managed to make profits despite the declining prices of digital assets, as reported by CNBC on Valentine’s Day.
The on-going bear market, now christened the crypto winter, has seen many startups in the industry close shop and employees leaving their jobs.
CoinMarketCap data show that Binance is the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume.
Many companies are struggling to stay afloat after the prices of digital assets, notably Bitcoin, plunged since the beginning of last year in what some have described as “the bursting of the bubble.”
The price of Bitcoin, the original cryptocurrency declined from nearly $20,000 in late December 2017 to under $3,700 by Dec. 31, 2018.
Despite the digital asset surrendering the gains it achieved in 2017, Binance has managed to stay warm amid the crypto winter.
In a phone interview with CNBC on Feb. 13, Zhou stated that the exchange is running a profitable business, something that a number of crypto companies consider a distant dream.
“To date, even in this bear market, we still run a profitable business,” said Zhou.
The firm does not publicize its financials to back up its claims, but independent investigations from some media outlets estimate the exchange’s profits from 2018 to be in the region of $446 million.
The independent analysis is based on how much the exchange spent on buying back its BNB tokens.
The exchange’s founder and CEO, Changpeng Zhao told Bloomberg in July that the firm was targeting profits of anywhere between $500 million and $1 billion last year.
These, by any standards, are lofty ambitions for a startup that was only founded in 2017 and managed to raise $15 million in its initial coin offering (ICO).
Binance’s IPO Plans and Mergers and Acquisitions
A handful of companies in the crypto space, especially in the mining segment, have at least weighed on the possibility of going public. Examples include Bitmain, Canaan, and Ebang International.
Zhou downplayed the possibility of Binance seeking a stock market listing but did not dismiss the idea altogether.
He rather opted for the safer route and said that the company has “no plans” to go public in the short term.
In the meantime, it is safe to say that the exchange won’t be listed on any stock market.
With regards to mergers and acquisitions, Zhou said the company is:
“Always on the lookout for high-quality products.”
In its first-ever acquisition deal, Binance bought Trust Wallet, but the financial details were not disclosed.
However, it was later reported that the purchase was made using a mixture of cash, company stock, and BNB tokens.
“As Binance’s first public acquisition, we hope to continue providing our users with improved security, services and support,” the exchange said about the acquisition at the time.