Who is Richard Teng? Binance CEO is a storied finance pro, has a renewed focus on decentralising the world’s money

  • Promoted five times in two years at Binance, Richard Teng succeeded Changpeng Zhao as Binance’s CEO in November 2023, after CZ quit under a cloud.
  • Teng’s 30 years of regulatory and financial expertise is a valuable asset for Binance, aiding the company in navigating regulatory challenges.
  • Teng leads Binance with a focus on user safety, compliance, and Web3 growth, especially important given CZ’s admission of money laundering.

Rising to lead Binance, the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchange in just two years and four months, Richard Teng’s trajectory as a finance professional is worthy of your attention.

TLDR: Who is Richard Teng? With 30 years of regulatory and financial experience, he took over as Binance’s CEO in November 2023, succeeding Changpeng Zhao.

Richard Teng recently replaced Changpeng Zhao (CZ) as the CEO of Binance, the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchange, after CZ pleaded guilty to charges of money laundering, and was handed a $4.3 billion fine by the US Justice Department. Teng is a Singaporean businessman, former regulator and financial industry veteran with experience and expertise in the crypto space.

Let’s delve into his accomplishments that enabled him to fly up the promotion ladder.

Richard Teng’s rapid progress in Binance, becoming CEO in November 2023.

Richard Teng: A brief biography

1971: Richard Teng was born in Singapore.

1991: He did his undergraduate degree in accountancy at Nanyang Polytechnic in Singapore.

1994: Richard Teng graduated and then joined the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), where he played an essential role in the development and supervision of financial markets in Singapore.

1998: He obtained a master’s degree in applied finance with distinction from The University of Western Australia.

2004: He completed the Executive Leadership Programme at the Wharton School of Business.

2007: Teng left MAS and started his career at the Singapore Exchange (SGX), rising through the ranks to become Chief Compliance Officer.

2015: Richard Teng joined Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) as CEO of the Abu Dhabi International Financial Centre (ADGM) for six years, during which time ADGM was named the ‘Best International Financial Centre in the MENA Region’ four times in a row.

2021: He joined Binance as CEO of its Singapore subsidiary.

2023: Richard Teng was appointed CEO of Binance after CZ stepped down in the face of money laundering charges.

Also read: Vitalik Buterin reveals how to simplify Crypto for everyone

Richard Teng announced his new role on X.

Early beginnings and formative years

As CEO of ADGM, Richard Teng played a pivotal role in its launch in 2015, making it the first jurisdiction in the region to adopt common law. Under his leadership, key initiatives like the Private Real Estate Investment Trust regime, the New Venture Capital Framework, and the Aviation Financing Scheme were introduced in 2017, driving significant investment and growth.

ADGM’s excellence in fintech, regulatory frameworks, and supervisory labs has established it as the leading fintech hub in the Middle East and Africa. Recognised as the Financial Centre of the Year (MENA) in 2017, ADGM experienced a substantial increase in registered companies and licensed entities, showcasing Teng’s remarkable contribution to its success.

As the Chief Regulatory Officer of the Singapore Exchange (SGX), Richard Teng brings extensive financial sector experience. With prior senior roles at SGX and as the Director of Corporate Finance at the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), he spearheaded crucial initiatives over his 13-year tenure, including the consolidation of local banks and the internationalization of the banking sector. His contributions also led to the merger of the Singapore Exchange.

Joining SGX in 2007, he established a direct listing framework for Chinese companies, introduced regulatory measures for secondary listings, and bolstered stock market safeguards. Teng’s leadership has been marked by strategic facilitation and regulatory excellence, highlighting his significant achievements in the financial industry.

Also read: CZ quits as Binance CEO after $4.3 billion fine for money laundering

Richard Teng takes over key role from CEO Zhao at world’s largest crypto exchange, Binance.

Teng becomes the CEO of Binance, leads biggest crypto exchange

As the new CEO of Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Teng’s appointment comes as no surprise, as CZ himself mentioned a succession plan when he hired Teng.

Teng brings with him years of experience and expertise in various positions in the financial industry. His background in regulation and financial institutions is expected to be a valuable asset for Binance, especially as the company tackles regulatory challenges and continues to expand its global reach.

A former CoinDesk employee, who wished to remain anonymous, told CoinDesk via private message that senior leadership and regulators have all agreed in closed-door discussions that Richard Teng is the only leader who can take over from CZ and continue to build the company in line with his vision while helping to close the existing gap between the industry and regulators.

Pop quiz

How many times has Richard Teng been promoted during his tenure at Binance so far?

A. 3

B. 4

C. 5

D. 6

Find the answer at the bottom of this article.

Also read: Worldcoin’s value plummets by 50% amid escalating data privacy concerns

Richard Teng: A visionary’s rise inside Binance

Binance Holdings Ltd., branded Binance, first recruited Teng in August 2021, when he was made CEO of the Singapore business.

In December 2021, Teng was promoted to head of Mena.

Then in November 2022, Teng started on a journey of rapid promotion.

In November 2022 he was appointed to take charge of Europe (Head of EMEA). In April 2023 he was appointed to take charge of Asia (Head of Asia, EMEA), and in May 2023 he took charge of all regional markets outside the US. As of November 2023 he is CEO of Binance.

In November 2022, the bankruptcy of FTX triggered a global regulatory storm and the crypto industry came under intense scrutiny. Binance, as the largest cryptocurrency exchange, was under extreme regulatory pressure.

Since then, a series of regulatory events have continued:

February 2023: BUSD stopped minting offerings.

March: the CFTC filed a lawsuit in the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against Changpeng Zhao and entities for violations of the Commodity Exchange Act and CFTC regulations.

April: Dubai’s Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA) requested more governance information from Binance.

May: Binance voluntarily withdrew from the Canadian market due to regulatory policy changes.

June: the U.S. SEC filed 13 charges against Binance and Zhao Changpeng, including operating an unregistered exchange.

In this tough regulatory environment, Richard Teng was rapidly promoted for his excellent cross-border regulatory skills, getting promoted five times in just two years.

Also read: US DOJ deliberates Binance fraud charges

Binance’s New CEO Richard Teng: Innovation, Compliance, and User Focus.

Future horizons: Teng’s vision for tomorrow’s Binance

After taking over as CEO of Binance, Richard Teng posted on twitter, revealing his future focus:

1) reassuring users that they can remain confident in the financial strength, security, and safety of the company

2) collaborating with regulators to uphold high standards globally that foster innovation while providing important consumer protections

3) working with partners to drive growth and adoption of Web3

As Teng takes over Binance, his outlook for the future centers on ensuring user safety, working with regulators to maintain high standards, and collaborating with partners to drive the growth of Web3. These directions suggest that Teng will lead Binance in a way that focuses on the interests of users, drives innovation in the industry and ensures that the company complies with regulations.

Teng’s extensive experience in the financial industry and regulatory space, including his roles at the Monetary Authority of Singapore and Abu Dhabi Global Market, puts him in a strategic position to lead Binance’s response to the changing landscape of the cryptocurrency industry and drive innovation in the space.

Teng’s appointment as CEO of Binance marks a new beginning for the company and reaffirms its commitment to compliance and engagement with global regulators.

Richard Teng net worth

As a relative newcomer to a high-profile position like CEO of the world’s biggest crypto exchange, Teng has so far avoided too much scrutiny on his personal finances. But there are some clues that he is relatively wealthy already, and only likely to get wealthier in this new role.

Some have calculated his net worth to be around $3 million as of November 2023. That sounds like a conservative estimate for someone who has been involved in the finance industry for their entire career, in Singapore, one of the wealthier nations in Asia and as someone who now heads up the biggest cryptocurrency exchange in the world.

CZ himself is said to be worth close to $100 billion. His fine for admitting his role in the Binance money-laundering scandal was $50 million, a drop in the ocean for him.

Teng’s remuneration details will no doubt emerge over time, but as the CEO of Binance his salary alone will be in the millions, and equity and crypto bonuses will surely put him among the crypto billionaires before long.

The correct answer to the pop quiz is C. Richard Teng joined Binance as CEO of its Singapore subsidiary on August 2021. On December 2021, Teng was promoted to head of MENA at coin security.In November 2022 he was appointed to take charge of Europe on the side (Head of EMEA). In April 2023 he was appointed to take charge of Asia on the side (Head of Asia, EMEA), and In May 2023 he took charge of all regional markets outside the US. Today, November 2023 as CEO of Binance.


Elma Yuan

Elma Yuan was a junior reporter at BTW media interested in media and communication.

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