In a statement, Binance said the investment was made through its investment and incubator arm, Binance Labs, and aligns with its broader vision of “building the infrastructure that provides freedom of value exchange globally”.
Based in San Francisco with satellite offices in Hong Kong, and Europe, Koi Trading offers a “reliable, efficient, and compliant” OTC pathway for institutions and high net-worth individuals to engage with cryptocurrency. It also provides support services such as quantitative research, data science, and compliance consulting services.
Koi seeks to further penetrate the China and US markets, despite the broad-based ban on centralised cryptocurrency trading in the country. In China alone, the company said OTC trading has a daily volume of at least Rmb150 million ($21.6 million).
“We are thrilled that Binance Labs recognizes our team’s unique ability to deliver this vision; we cannot wait to build a reliable and professional brand around the globe in partnership with Binance Labs,” said Koi Trading founder and CEO Hao Chen.
Regulators from China to the US have been cracking down on cryptocurrency exchanges since last year, making it difficult for venues like Binance to find a permanent base. The company had an office in Japan and was trying to get a license to operate there, but decided to remove its staff to avoid a clash with local regulators.
Binance Labs, the incubation program of Binance that seeks to support top early-stage teams and help them jumpstart their best ideas, focuses on projects in public chain, decentralized exchanges, derivatives investment, token trading platform, and mobile wallet and payment.
Specifically, Binance Labs incubates, invests, and empowers blockchain and cryptocurrency entrepreneurs, projects, and communities.