Binance Holdings Ltd. has committed $500 million for Elon Musk’s proposed takeover of Twitter Inc. as part of its strategy to bring social media and news sites into the world of web3.
“We’re excited to be able to help Elon realize a new vision for Twitter,” Changpeng Zhao, chief executive officer of Binance, said in a statement. “We hope to be able to play a role in bringing social media and web3 together and broadening the use and adoption of crypto and blockchain technology.”
The deal was part of the $7.1 billion of new financing that Musk has secured for his proposed $44 billion takeover of Twitter. Sequoia Capital Fund, Qatar Holding LLC, and Brookfield Asset Management are among other backers in the package.
Twitter is a main platform for online discourse by the crypto community. Yesterday, Musk briefly changed his Twitter avatar to a collage of Bored Ape NFTs, one of the most popular collections on the market. This resulted in a surge in the price of the ApeCoin token during European hours.
Binance is creating an internal team to focus on how blockchain could be helpful to Twitter and other social platforms, and has brought up BNB Chain -- a distributed ledger Binance helped to build -- to Musk and his team, Patrick Hillmann, chief communications officer for Binance, said in an interview.
‘Once in a Lifetime’
“This is probably one of the greatest laboratories that web3 has ever had access to,” Hillmann said. “It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity.”
BNB Chain is already used for decentralized finance and other applications and supports a token called BNB, which has a market capitalization of about $61.8 billion.
‘Web3’ is a catchall term referring to a vision of the world wide web as a decentralized environment that uses blockchain technology and digital tokens to wrest control of the internet from giant technology companies.
Prior to the funding announcement, Zhao told Bloomberg TV that Binance is ready to invest in any “strong business with existing users, existing models” that can be helped with additional monetization models using Web3, blockchain and cryptocurrencies.
Gaming, e-commerce, logistics and real estate are also sectors that the company is interested in investing. In these industries, “we’ll be pretty passive and pretty silent,” he said.
Binance announced in February that it is making a strategic investment of $200 million into the more than 100 year-old news publisher Forbes and will advise its digital assets strategy.A Binance spokesperson declined to share further details on the deal, when asked if the company will pay for funding in crypto.