Let’s start with a disclaimer. I am a big fan of the Binance and it’s various ecosystem. You may find this article a little tilted in favour of Binance. I do hold BNB and I won’t be paid for this article.
To Invest in BNB or any other crypto assets pls DYOR !!
You may have come across various charts plotting the price of BNB, how good or bad it can be. The language of charts can be decoded by a few, and I will put it as a mere 20% of the entire crypto crowd.
Rest 80%, may understand a little or almost nothing about the chart language. These so-called Noobs, arrive at the value of the coin or project based on pure perception, which is shaped by various positive and negative factors he sees or experience in his crypto journey.
Typically, a Noobs buying and selling instinct follows the pattern of a herd mentality. This 80%, rather than depending upon charts or reading or understanding the tech behind the project, is easily swayed by a piece of positive news and goes into panic mode by a slight trigger of negative news.
To understand the value of BNB, it is essential to understand the role of Binance and its various ecosystems. In this article, I am trying to find the value of BNB from a noob perceptive and how Binance and BNB have gained a stable place in the minds of most of the newcomers in the crypto sphere.
Binance Exchange — The Value Creator
In the beginning, there was Mt.Gox, and then the infamous hack happened. From the ashes of Mt.Gox, new exchanges like Coinbase, Kraken, Bittrex and Poloniex came into existence. Till 2017, a majority of trade happened in these exchanges. Then Binance happened.
Binance began its operations in 2017 by raising $15,000,000 from the market. This was done via the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) route, where BNB token was offered at the rate of $0.1. This was the first time an exchange came up with the idea of Exchange token and the market loved it.
Within the first three months of the launch, Binance was propelled to the top 3 cryptocurrencies exchange platform in the world. It didn’t stop there. By constant innovation and providing good trading experience, Binance became the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange desk (by trading volume) by April 2018.
The success of Binance in such short time was attributed to various factors, some of them were
💠 Binance has created an exchange engine that could process 1.4 MTPS (million transactions per second). This was a new and pleasant experience as in those time, most of the exchange was slow and complacent when it came to platform performance.
💠 Joining and Trading in Binance is relatively easy, as it just needs a working email. KYC is not made mandatory unless you want to participate in an IEO or to raise your daily withdrawal limits( to 100 BTC).
💠Binance has one of the best customer service team in the industry. All queries are attended with the set timeframe and response is instant. In case of an emergency, you will be provided real-time support, which is rare in this industry.
💠Unlike other exchanges which were slow in listing new projects or altcoins, Binance understood the pulse of the market and gave the customer more choice by listing a wide variety of projects. This made the exchange an instant success with the altcoin hunters. ( Fun fact: During the bull run, Binance even had to stop issuing new accounts due to the customer overloads.).
💠Binance has one of the best security infrastructures in the market. Apart from the 7000 BTC hack, Binance’s security has stood the test of time. Currently, Binance is the only exchange which offers users the protection of Hardware Security Key. It also uses advanced AI, tracks unusual buying or selling patterns, blockchain forensics etc. to protect the users. Apart from all the above Binance has set up a SAFU fund to offer protection to its users and their funds in extreme cases.
💠The greatest strength of Binance is its neat and simple interface. For a newcomer, trading in binance is a cakewalk. Binance also provides the user with multilanguage support (up to 15 languages), which helps the non-English users to use the platform with ease. You can read more about Binance new features here
💠 Binance was quick to shift its base to “The Blockchain Island” Malta which has more friendly regulations. This helped Binance to start offering fiat to a cryptocurrency exchange and has plans to launch more country-specific exchanges to offer fiat to crypto services.
💠Apart from being a Top Volume Centralized exchange, recently Binance has evolved into a “A to Z” blockchain ecosystem by launching its own blockchain termed as Binance Chain and a decentralized exchange termed as “Dex” which did more volume in the first couple of hours than the “second biggest DEX did in an entire day
CZ ( Changpeng Zhao) — The Wizard of OZ
Like him or hate him, you can’t ignore him. That’s Changpeng “CZ” Zhao for you.
How many of you know the name of the CEO of OKex, Bittrex, Kraken or even Coinbase. The high chances are that you may not even know their names. But if you ask anyone who is the CEO of Binance, a majority of them will tell the name of CZ.
Apart from all the technical advantages and other factors, what sets Binance apart is the leadership of CZ. Rarely you may come across a CEO who keeps interacting with the community as CZ do, especially during the bad times. Be it a piece of good news or a piece of bad news; you will hear it from CZ first. This regular and open communication helps to build trust among the community and make you feel that he is just a regular guy and is one among you.
From my perspective, what sets CZ apart from other CEO’s in the same industry is his crisis management skills. During a crisis, CZ goes into overdrive. He starts to update the community more about the developments via his official twitter handle as well as various Binance official channels. This helps to stem any possible negative rumours or FUD that can arise from that situation.
This was evident in two major instances. The first one when Binance went down for 32 hours of maintenance in Feb 2018 and the second one was during the 7000 BTC hack of May 2019. For any exchange, these kinds of the doomsday event were enough to knock them out of business. But Binance survived both, mainly due to the transparency as well as open communication from CZ side which helped to boost the trust of the community.
As per CZ
“We always aim to maintain constant and transparent communication with our community during a crisis. We believe this to be a strong contributing factor to the support we received from the community in return.” Link
I don’t want to stress more here. If you want to read more about CZ incredible story, you can read it here.
A Short History - BNB
Binance Coin(BNB) is the proprietary coin of Binance Exchange which was launched in July 2017 as an ERC20 token. BNB was first offered as an ICO which raised over $15 million. In the initial days, the main purpose of BNB was to act as a Utility token providing its holders with the option to use BNB to pay various fees and trading discount in Binance Platform.
This concept was new at that time as most of the users were looking for an option to get a trade discount. Unlike other ICO’s of that time, BNB was able to offer its users a clear use case and an instant benefit for holding BNB. Once Binance became an immediate hit, the demand for BNB skyrocketed as most of the users started to buy BNB to get trade discounts.
From a performance perspective, even in the bear market of 2018–19 BNB was one among the few coins to broke both the ATH value in terms of BTC as well as USD. Rallying from around $6 at the beginning of the year to $39.57 in this year alone this performance helped a lot number of investors to take note of the project as it was performing irrespective of the market conditions.
Binance team could have stopped innovating as Binance was almost becoming a monopoly in crypto trading, and BNB token was performing as well. Maybe Binance has learned from the past crypto players and has seen what happened to them when a new player with more resources and ideas enter and capture the market. So they started to add more value to BNB with new strategies.
Earlier in December 2017, Utilizing the ICO frenzy, Binance announced the launch of a new project for token sales and fundraisings — Binance Launchpad. Binance defines its Launchpad as a “token launch platform for transformative projects”.
The idea behind Launchpad is straightforward. It helps the user to participate in ICO’s but with a more secure way. The ICO’s will be hosted on Binance platform and once the sale is finished tokens will be delivered into your Binance wallet. Binance will veto all the projects, and it’s a guarantee that the token will be listed in Binance as well. This idea was so successful that most of the other exchange copied the same approach in various names.
In the initial days, Binance provided the customer with the option to participate in the Launchpad sales using either BNB, ETH or BTC. Later on, participation was strictly limited to BNB holders via a lottery system. This created a strong demand for BNB as most of the Launchpad projects was delivering excellent ROI’s.
This was kind of new experience to the Noobs who can invest in a project and earn high returns with less risk. This is evident from the Price action as well as each Launchpad project is announced, BNB makes wild moves. Recently in an AMA CZ has hinted that he may do almost 5 IEO listings in August and Sept alone which means more returns to BNB holders.
The Quarterly Burn
Coin Burn is a trivial subject when it comes to some project which intends to use this as a strategy to artificially inflate prices, and mostly it is a one-time event, but not for BNB.
As per Binance Whitepaper
Every quarter, we will destroy BNB based on the trading volume on our crypto-to-crypto platform, until we destroy 50% of all the BNB. All transactions will be on the blockchain. We eventually will destroy 100MM BNB, leaving 100MM BNB remaining.
As promised in the whitepaper, Binance started to buy back BNB from the market using a portion of profits(20%) every quarter and destroy them. Hence the exchange had set aside 20% of its profits for this purpose. This purchase and subsequent burn will go till the total BNB in circulation are reduced to 100 Million Tokens from the initial circulation of 200 million BNB.
Recently, the Binance team has completed 8th BNB burn. This time the buyback was different. Rather than using the trade profit, Binance started to burn from a part of team token that was allocated in the ICO phase.
As per the official communication
“According to the Binance whitepaper, 40% of the total BNB supply (80,000,000 BNB, currently worth about US$2,400,000,000) was allocated to the Binance team, as a reward to the work they have put into building the Binance ecosystem. But now, we are giving that up, and we will contribute this to the BNB burn. We are doubling down on our mission to exchange the world and spread the freedom of money.”
This move was significant in raising the investor confidence as a majority of them were worried about the incoming dump that may have happened from unlocking of Team token (Even though CZ has communicated that no team token has been sold so far ).
This was one of the first instances in crypto history where the entire team has let go of their full token allocation. As CZ said “This shows that the Binance team is not money-driven. We are here on a mission. Let’s work together to increase the freedom of money.”
Binance Coin — More than a discount coupon
Even though BNB was envisioned as a trade discount token, it silent evolved into a utility token which offers its holders multiple benefits.
Currently, use cases for Binance Coin are around120 categorized into three: useBNB, buyBNB, and storeBNB.
Right from paying a flight ticket to buying in online BNB has covered it all. You can read a detailed list of BNB use case here
In the current situation, Binance is the most trusted Exchange in case of quality projects listed as well as with trading volume. While most of the exchanges took a back seat in the ongoing bear market, Binance took the initiate to keep building as well as push ahead in terms of product offerings as well as various other initiatives. It should also be noted that irrespective of suffering a massive 7000 hack and a KYC leak FUD, trust of the customer as well as projects in Binance has never come down.
As Binance and its ecosystem grow, so is BNB. Even in a bear market, it has given its investors good returns in terms of ROI as well as utility.
To end this article, I would like to quote Travis Kling, as he said in a recent podcast episode with Peter McCormack:
“I tip my hat to Changpeng Zhao in a lot of ways. The guy is relentlessly trying to present a compelling case to hold BNB, right? At every turn, [there’s something]. They have fiat onramps in Argentina, but you need BNB. Oh, you need BNB for discounted trading fees. There’s this Launchpad IEO thing, which is literally free money for investors, but you need to hold BNB. He’s about to release margin, and I’m sure you need to hold BNB if you want to use margin on Binance. You have all these little gimmicks [that give it value].”
Disclaimer: This article is not intended as investment advice. It is just my opinion. As always DYOR.