Binance has committed $2 billion to the firm’s crypto rescue fund as it aims to help rebuild the industry. Binance founder and CEO Changpeng Zhao said the so-called Industry Recovery Initiative (IRI) would possibly buy up some of the ailing crypto projects acquired by the now-defunct exchange FTX.
Binance’s Recovery Initiative Already Has 150 Applicants
Binance wants to revive the industry after FTX’s calamitous bankruptcy.
As such, the world’s largest crypto exchange by volume has created the Industry Recovery Initiative, which will allow players hit by a liquidity crisis to request financial assistance.
Binance initially committed $1 billion worth of crypto to the initiative and has since deployed another $1 billion, essentially boosting the size of the fund to over $2 billion.
Yesterday, #Binance allocated ANOTHER $1 billion to the industry recover initiative. All in BUSD.
— CZ Binance (@cz_binance) November 25, 2022
Speaking with Bloomberg, Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao indicated that the fund will have a “loose” structure and be publicly visible on the blockchain, with other industry players also able to contribute to the fund. CZ posted the link to his company’s initial contribution of $1 billion, which is stored at an address on the BNB Chain.
Other crypto-native projects including Aptos Labs, Jump Crypto, Polygon Ventures, Animoca Brands, Brooker Group, Kronos, and GSR Markets, have already contributed a total of $50 million to the program.
A blog post detailing the project reveals that the company has so far received 150 financial support applications from different companies.
Binance clarifies that the initiative is not an investment fund but a “co-investment opportunity for organizations eager to support the future of Web3.” The rescue initiative is expected to run for six months. Those who make contributions will be able to withdraw their unused funds at the end of the program.
Binance Is Weighing A Buyout Of FTX’s Assets
Binance chief Zhao also confirmed during the Bloomberg interview that the firm is looking to buy up distressed assets from cornered rival exchange FTX. In particular, Binance is eyeing cryptocurrency projects purchased by the now-bankrupt exchange, although he didn’t specify which ones.
“We definitely want to look at those assets,” CZ posited. “They invested in a number of different projects, some of them are OK, some of them are bad, but I think there are a number of assets that may be salvageable. We’ll look through that when they become available.”
Once-billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried’s crypto empire, including the FTX exchange and the crypto trading firm Alameda Research, emerged as a savior-like figure for many struggling firms earlier this year, with the then-CEO claiming they had “a few billions” to spend on industry bailouts.
That said, the rapid unravelling of FTX unleashed a fresh wave of crypto exchanges and lenders like BlockFi reportedly preparing for bankruptcy. Voyager Digital, which had accepted a $1.4 billion bid from FTX to acquire its assets, has since reopened the bidding process.
FTX’s collapse now leaves CZ’s industry-leading giant to play white knight in the industry.