Ava Labs’ John Wu on FTX Collapse, Binance.US, and Exciting News From South Korea
John Wu, President of Ava Labs, recently spoke to CNBC about the FTX collapse, Binance.US, and plans for Avalanche (AVAX). This comes after Binance’s US division has stopped direct dollar withdrawals.
According to their revised policies, customers wishing to withdraw U.S. dollars need to first exchange them for stable coins or other cryptocurrencies. Earlier in June, it was announced that Binance US users wouldn’t be permitted to use U.S. dollars for cryptocurrency purchases. The platform attributes these alterations to the SEC’s unwarranted legal accusations against their operations.
A statement by Binance.US read, “The SEC has taken to using extremely aggressive and intimidating tactics in its pursuit of an ideological campaign against the American digital asset industry.”
Wu Comments on Binance.US Situation
John Wu mentioned that this follows a trend, pointing out that Binance recently suspended withdrawals in the UK as well.
These continuous disruptions are undoubtedly impacting Binance’s operations. According to Wu, trading volumes on Binance have plunged by 70%, while Coinbase has seen a 50% drop, yet they are gaining market share.
He finds the situation remarkable and expressed hope for a swift resolution, emphasising the importance of people having access to their funds.
Have Investors Regained Trust in Crypto?
Wu believes that trust in the crypto markets needs to be viewed through the lens of two distinct groups.
Firstly, long-standing crypto enthusiasts, as indicated by on-chain analytics, remain committed. According to Wu, about 70% of crypto addresses are in cold storage, demonstrating they’re holding onto their assets.
On the other hand, he believes newcomers to the crypto space are showing a noticeable drop in enthusiasm. Wu said this dwindling interest is evident in exchanges like Coinbase in the US, where trading volumes have dipped by 50% year on year.
Wu stated he is concerned that the market hasn’t fully bottomed out. He based some of this sentiment on the fact that the FTX trial has raised eyebrows amidst some interesting revelations. Additionally, regulatory uncertainty continues at least in the United States.
However, John is optimistic about overseas regulations, particularly the forthcoming MiCA framework in the EU set to be introduced in 2024.
Regulatory Clarity Outside the U.S. Fuels Development
Wu also discussed some exciting developments regarding the Avalanche blockchain in Asia, particularly in South Korea.
Large corporations are now incorporating the Avalanche blockchain and its subnetworks to innovate their business models and expand their user base. A prime illustration is the South Korean conglomerate, SK.
They have launched a subnetwork on the Avalanche blockchain, primarily focused on a loyalty program. This program is one of the world’s most extensive, with 24 million South Koreans participating and over 100,000 distinctive merchants involved.
However, SK identified that the predominant user age for this loyalty scheme was on the older side. To address this and attract a younger demographic, SK introduced applications associated with K-pop artists and esports teams.
Wu explains that this move to intertwine three different communities – loyalty program users, K-pop fans, and esports enthusiasts – has been effective. He says preliminary results show over 170,000 new wallet addresses and a noticeable boost in engagement, revealing that SK is successfully targeting a younger audience through this integrated approach on their blockchain subnetwork.
Data from Avascan shows daily transactions hovering between 1,400 and almost 4,000 over the past week on the subnet.