A Crypto Vacation Particular: Previous, Current, And Future With Ex-Binance CFO Wei Zhou


2022 is coming to an finish, and our employees at NewsBTC determined to launch this Crypto Vacation Particular to offer some perspective on the crypto trade. We are going to speak with a number of friends to grasp this 12 months’s highs and lows for crypto.

Within the spirit of Charles Dicken’s traditional, “A Christmas Carol,” we’ll look into crypto from completely different angles, take a look at its doable trajectory for 2023 and discover widespread floor amongst these completely different views of an trade which may help the way forward for funds.

Zhou: “It received’t be enterprise as ordinary for centralized exchanges. For one, the times of commingling customers and the exchanges’ belongings are lengthy gone.”

We’re ending our institutional spherical with Wei Zhou; he labored as Chief Monetary Officer for 3 years on the largest crypto trade worldwide, Binance. Above the remaining, this firm and its present CEO, Changpeng “CZ” Zhao, closely impacted the nascent trade and can proceed to train affect within the coming years.

Zhou: “Bitcoin, identical to the Web, will survive any storm that comes its approach; this I’ve no inkling of doubt about.”

Zhou evaluations the most important second in 2022 from his distinctive perspective. As well as, he talks in regards to the fundamentals that may maintain crypto alive and on observe to meet its future. That is what he informed us:

Q: What’s probably the most important distinction for the crypto market in the present day in comparison with Christmas 2021? Past the value of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and others, what modified from that second of euphoria to in the present day’s perpetual worry? Has there been a decline in adoption and liquidity? Are fundamentals nonetheless legitimate?

A: The crypto market has actually modified rather a lot previously 12 months. There are three questions right here so I’ll reply every individually:

I feel the most important change this 12 months has been because of the collapse of some key trade gamers, from Celsius and 3AC (Three Arrows Capital) to BlockFi and most just lately FTX. With tens of billions worn out instantly and lots of of billions extra not directly, buyers have change into cautious, and rightly so. Whereas it has prompted immense ache, the collapse of those giants has served to remind us to be ever-so diligent with our crypto funding choices, conduct thorough analysis and abstain from entities whose licensing and regulatory standing is unclear. I do consider that the state of affairs will change in 2023 and that investor confidence will resume, however we will’t afford to overlook the teachings realized this 12 months.
Liquidity – sure. Adoption – under no circumstances. After all with the collapse of a giant market maker like FTX liquidity was affected as a number of exchanges relied on it. Buyers have additionally pulled fairly a little bit of their cash from exchanges which additional escalated the liquidity crunch. Nevertheless, with adoption, I consider it continues unabated. Merchants could have pulled again a bit, however for these to whom crypto was far more than hypothesis, equivalent to in our residence market of the Philippines the place play-to-earn and remittances depend on crypto, adoption will proceed to surge.
The basics are nonetheless rock-solid. I wish to level out that regardless of the chaos, Bitcoin has by no means been at fault. No one has hacked Bitcoin as a protocol, nor has it modified from being the decentralized cryptocurrency Satoshi gifted us again in 2009. Rules are essential to police the market stakeholders, however the fundamentals of cryptocurrencies and blockchain as a know-how are nonetheless stable.

Q: What are the dominant narratives driving this alteration in market circumstances? And what must be the narrative in the present day? What are most individuals overlooking? We noticed a significant crypto trade blowing up, a hedge fund considered untouchable, and an ecosystem that promised a monetary utopia. Is Crypto nonetheless the way forward for finance, or ought to the group pursue a brand new imaginative and prescient?

Once more, I’ll break up the query:

With the collapse of a number of companies, together with a few of the greatest Bitcoin miners, crypto skeptics and a few mainstream media have change into re-energized of their battle in opposition to crypto. Even lawmakers within the US and elsewhere are leaping onboard the “let’s battle Bitcoin” bandwagon. This, as anticipated, has put doubts within the minds of some buyers. Nevertheless, most individuals are overlooking that Bitcoin doesn’t want all these gamers to succeed. Satoshi designed it to be a decentralized digital foreign money. 5 years in the past, there have been different gamers and in a decade, there shall be a number of extra, however Bitcoin will nonetheless be as stable then because it was a decade in the past.
Crypto remains to be the way forward for finance. In case you recall, when the dot-com bubble burst, there have been all method of questions in regards to the viability of the Web as a know-how and the businesses constructing on it. However take a look at Amazon, Fb, Google and others in the present day – they’re defining the world we reside in. It’s because, regardless of the shakeups with the market gamers, the underlying know-how was essentially transformative. Bitcoin, identical to the Web, will survive any storm that comes its approach; this I’ve no inkling of doubt about.

Q: In case you should select one, what do you assume was a big second for crypto in 2022? And can the trade really feel its penalties throughout 2023? The place do you see the trade subsequent Christmas? Will it survive this winter? Mainstream is as soon as once more declaring the demise of the trade. Will they lastly get it proper?


It’s tough to decide on only one second to seize what has been crypto’s most eventful 12 months but. Nevertheless, since I come from the trade facet, I might level to the FTX collapse as a landmark second. Its affect has been and can proceed to be felt within the trade. It should primarily have an effect on the trade in two methods:

It has made buyers change into keener about who they belief with their belongings and the way these custodians retailer the belongings. Gone are the times when making a pockets and cruising by was sufficient. Buyers at the moment are deeply exploring self-custody options, which opposite to opinion I feel is a superb course to take. After they require to commerce their belongings, they’re now eager to solely work with exchanges which can be totally regulated like Cash.ph which is licensed by the Philippines central financial institution and is frequently audited by the apex financial institution.
It has made regulators extra involved in regards to the trade. We’ve already seen international locations like Japan, South Korea and extra transferring to higher regulate the trade to forestall one other FTX debacle. We because the crypto trade have to be prepared and able to embrace laws if we’re to climate the storm and change into a mainstream trade.
We are going to survive this winter undoubtedly. We’ve gone via worse – keep in mind when Bitcoin sunk all the best way right down to $3,000? As a bonus, we now have institutional buyers who’re advancing the sector, not like throughout prior winters. However I feel the most important cause we’ll survive the winter is that there at the moment are many extra use circumstances than there have been previously. Remittances, play-to-earn gaming, NFTs, Web3, the metaverse – all these have shot into prominence in current instances and they’re all powered by crypto and blockchain.

Q: What’s subsequent for exchanges equivalent to Binance in 2023 and past? Do you assume the current occasions with FTX will jeopardize the way forward for these platforms? Many are already speculating in regards to the shift in liquidity from Centralize to Decentralize Exchanges (DEX) because of the customers’ insecurity within the former


It received’t be enterprise as ordinary for centralized exchanges. For one, the times of commingling customers and the exchanges’ belongings are lengthy gone. FTX has woken up your complete trade to the risks this follow, which is unlawful in conventional finance, can have. Proof of reserves is already changing into a giant pattern as extra buyers ask questions on how and the place their belongings are saved.
Regulators are additionally cracking down a lot more durable on exchanges. Within the Philippines, for example, the BSP was fast to audit exchanges to probe if that they had been uncovered to the FTX contagion and fortunately, neither Cash.ph nor our friends had been uncovered to FTX.
There shall be extra give attention to decentralized exchanges, and far more so on self-custody. Extra customers at the moment are exploring wallets that give them full possession of their crypto – in any case, not your keys, not your cash. I’m a giant supporter of self-custody for these with the technical potential to do it efficiently. After they require to commerce, I might advise them to all the time use an trade that’s licensed and supervised by a acknowledged nationwide or regional watchdog.

It’s really unlucky what has occurred this 12 months. Crypto was meant to be a software to liberate individuals and provides them new alternatives in finance and past. This 12 months has proven the worst of crypto, and I sympathize with each investor whose cash has been held up or worn out within the crypto contagion.

BTC’s value transferring sideways on the day by day chart. Supply: BTCUSDT Tradingview

Nevertheless, as we march forward in 2023 and past, I consider and hope that crypto will climate the storm and emerge even stronger. The imaginative and prescient Satoshi had was monetary liberation for the billions who’ve been marginalized for many years, and regardless of all of the hurdles and setbacks, I consider we’re nonetheless on the right track to realize this imaginative and prescient.


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