Coinbase CEO dismisses speculation that exchange plans to relocate from US
Armstrong stated that even though the US is falling behind in crypto regulations, Coinbase will always have a "US presence."
US-based exchange Coinbase’s CEO Brian Armstrong denied the suggestions that the exchange might carry its headquarters overseas to escape the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) interference, as reported by CNBC.
Armstrong criticized the US for falling behind in crypto regulations but stated that Coinbase would remain in the US, Armstrong said in an interview with CNBC in Dubai.
“Coinbase is not going to relocate overseas. We’re always going to have a U.S. presence …”
The crypto community assumed that Coinbase was considering moving its headquarters to United Arab Emirates (UAE) after Coinbase’s VP of International and Business Development, Nana Murugesan stated the country had the potential to be a strategic hub for the exchange.
Murugesan shared his opinions on the UAE’s potential on May 8 without actually stating the expansion would be carrying headquarters. However, this came soon after Coinbase started having regulatory problems with the SEC, which led the community to think the exchange might relocate to avoid the legal confrontation.
The SEC issued a Wells notice to Coinbase on March 22, indicating that the SEC decided to imply enforcement action against the exchange. On April 24, Coinbase responded by filing a lawsuit to SEC, asking for clarification on crypto regulations.
US is falling behind
While denying relocation, Armstrong commented on the SEC’s recent attitude towards crypto and said that SEC’s negative tone might indicate that the SEC is not trying to regulate crypto but curtail it.
“The SEC is a bit of an outlier here. There’s kind of a lone crusade, if you will, with Gary Gensler, the chair there, and he has taken a more anti-crypto view for some reason.”
Armstrong said the lawsuits the SEC has been filing are “quite unhelpful” for the crypto industry in the US but an opportunity to get some regulatory clarity from the courts.
Comparing the US regulatory landscape to other countries, Armstrong stated:
“The U.S. is a little bit behind right now.
I would say we’re seeing more thoughtful approaches; for instance, in the EU, they’ve actually already passed comprehensive crypto legislation, the U.K. has been incredibly welcoming, and for us there, and that’s been a hub where we’ve decided to serve the U.K. market.”