Binance appoints co-founder Yi He as new head of venture capital arm 

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Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, announced on Wednesday that it has appointed its co-founder, Yi He, as the new head of its Venture Capital arm and incubator, Binance Labs.

The announcement comes after Binance Labs raised $500M (approximately €491M) from global institutional investors, including DST Global Partners and Breyer Capital, to invest in projects that can extend the use cases of cryptocurrencies and drive the adoption of Web3 and blockchain technologies.

Yi will lead global strategy and the day-to-day operations at Binance Labs. Part of her focus will be on significantly supporting infrastructure projects and improving utility in innovative crypto and blockchain projects.

“Part of the journey of seeing Binance grow, especially through tough market conditions, has been the ability to identify founders with the skills and embody the values needed to thrive in an environment where resources are more limited. As a leading player in the space, my goal is to help define the industry standard by identifying and supporting sustainable projects and building an ecosystem of quality blockchain solutions that empowers the entire industry,” says Yi.

She adds, “It is a foregone conclusion that Web3 will reach one billion new users in the next five years. However, Web3 will only become mainstream when its products weave seamlessly into users’ lives. To expedite widespread adoption, we need to focus our resources on supporting those projects that will push the boundaries of Web3 technology and create products that provide solutions to real-world problems.”

Binance Labs: What you need to know

Binance Labs manages a total AUM of $7.5B (approximately €7.3B), making it the largest crypto VC in the industry. Binance’s VC arm makes investments across three stages: incubation, early-stage venture, and late-stage growth.

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Since 2018, Binance Labs has invested in and incubated more than 200 projects from over 25 countries. Its portfolio includes industry-leading projects such as 1inch, Audius, Axie Infinity, Dune Analytics, Elrond, Injective, Polygon, Optimism, The Sandbox, and STEPN.

“As part of the founding team, Yi has been actively involved in Labs since its inception and has played a pivotal role in identifying early-stage projects and founders with the vision and drive to disrupt those global institutions that no longer serve society effectively,” says Binance CEO CZ (Changpeng Zhao). 

He adds, “This is the perfect moment for Yi to take on a larger role in Labs as this market presents an unparalleled opportunity to identify those projects with the tenacity to thrive in tough market conditions.”

Previous developments

Last month, the Dutch Central Bank (DNB) imposed a fine of €3.3M on Binance for offering crypto services in the Netherlands without a legal registration with DNB.

According to the central bank, the crypto exchange was dealt with a third category fine, and the administrative fine against Binance had been increased due to increased seriousness and culpability. 

Earlier this year, the company also launched a payments technology company and its official fiat-to-crypto payments provider – Bifinity. According to the company, Bifinity’s solution connects businesses, merchants, and users to the world of crypto and blockchain.

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