The world’s biggest exchange Binance is moving into futures trading.
The Malta-based exchange announced Monday that it had acquired JEX – a Seychelles-based trading platform that offers spot and derivatives trading solutions for crypto. “JEX will join the Binance ecosystem as Binance JEX and focus on further building the cryptoasset derivatives market, providing Binance users with professional services including futures contracts, options and other derivatives products,” the exchange stated on its website.
But there is a catch. The exchange plans to test the JEX platform by having users trade on it as well as an internally-developed futures solution. Users can win a total of 10,000 BNB tokens by voting for their favorite platform. “Through the competition, we hope to fully review the two products in terms of market feedback, scalability and liquidation model design. It’ll help with the ultimate decision making,” a Binance spokesperson told the Block.
A Crowded Field
In July, Chengpeng Zhao, Binance’s CEO, had said that a futures platform that allowed twenty times trading leverage was on the way. He also provided a glimpse of the platform through a screenshot.
Binance has been on a launching spree of new products in recent times to attract new customers to its platform and provide more services to the existing ones. It has already launched a margin trading business and a crypto lending program.
The crypto futures platform is a crowded field. Along with veterans of the crypto industry, such as BitMex, other players in the field include the soon-to-be-launched Bakkt and ErisX. Binance’s direct competition is BitMex.
But Binance may have a head start as compared to other players because it already has a substantial customer base, according to Ricky Li from Altonomy.
“Given the huge existing customer base on spot and margin trading, it will be relatively much easier for Binance to build initial liquidity than other competitors, which is the most difficult part of starting up an exchange,” he told The Block.