Binance Hires Big-Name Former Government Officials to Set Up Advisory Board

Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange by trading volume, has rounded up prominent former government officials to act as a global board of advisers as the company negotiates the regulatory and political minefield the crypto industry finds itself in.

The board – led by Max Baucus, a former U.S. Senate Finance Committee chairman and ambassador to China – also includes David Wright, a former secretary general of the International Organization of Securities Commissions; Bruno Bézard, a former head of the French Treasury and economic adviser to the prime minister; Henrique de Campos Meirelles, Brazil’s former minister of the economy and one-time president of its central bank; and seven others.

“We're supercharging our ability to manage regulatory complexity by tapping into the highest level of expertise available anywhere in the world,” Binance founder and CEO Changpeng Zhao said in a statement about the group’s members, some of whom have been previously announced. They’ll advise the company on regulatory, political and social matters, the company said, without offering any specific issues they’ll tackle.

The board, which recently met in Paris for the first time, will include a number of well-connected advisers from many of the jurisdictions Binance operates in. Binance had already hired Baucus, a longtime Montana senator, last year as a government adviser. Additional members include:

  • David Plouffe, a former senior adviser to President Barack Obama
  • Edward Vaizey, a member of the U.K.’s House of Lords who was a former minister of state for culture and the digital economy
  • Christin Schäfer, a former banker in Germany who founded a data consulting firm
  • Adalberto Palma Gómez, a former Mexican Banking and Securities Commission (CNBV) president, whose arrival had previously been announced
  • Ibukun Awosika, the first woman to chair the First Bank of Nigeria
  • HyungRin Bang, a former executive director of Samsung and Hyundai that works as a political adviser in Korea
  • Leslie Maasdorp, a vice president and CFO of the New Development Bank who previously worked in the government of South Africa and with Bank of America’s Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Barclays