Business In:Brief with Caroline Bowler (BTC Markets)
CEO of BTC Markets, January 2020-present
Caroline Bowler is the CEO of BTC Markets, the largest, most liquid Australian digital asset exchange. Founded in 2013, BTC Markets is trusted by over 270,000 verified Australian users who have traded over $8.7 billion. It provides real-time, instant AUD deposits and withdrawals, processed 24/7 via the New Payment Platform. BTC Markets is a registered digital currency exchange with AUSTRAC.
Caroline tells us more about herself, her keys to keeping on the path of success, as well as her advice to others in her field.
What was your first job?
My first job was washing dishes and clearing tables at a local tourist attraction. I was 12 at the time and my mother and older sister worked there too. It was a fantastic first taste of hard work and people skills.
What's your proudest achievement?
Being an employer has been my proudest achievement. I will always remember one of the first hires I made. I was able to give that person the opportunity to be employed in a new and challenging role that they otherwise might not have been hired for. Not only did they have a different working background to me, but we also came from very different cultural backgrounds. However, we were able to learn and grow immensely from each other. It was a fantastic working relationship.
What's something that you have learned in business that took you by surprise?
How common it is in the workforce for people to simply be winging it! Also, how much you can achieve just by starting something – it gets a life of its own if you put some effort into it.
How do you plan on growing your business in the near future?
We're focusing a lot this year on executing high quality, strategic partnerships with relevant industry players. We believe this is the best way for us to grow and capitalise on our leading position in the market with our 270,000 user base.
Continuing to stay abreast of regulatory changes and trends that are coming out of other jurisdictions and being able to respond accordingly is also helping us to grow as a business.
What other business leader do you most admire and why?
A fictional character, but I'm going to say Alexis Colby. Watching Joan Collins on Dynasty formulated for me what a successful business person could be.
Apart from that, my dad. His beginnings were humble and his work ethic and brains transformed all our lives. He took calculated risks, tried new things (is a patent holder) and instilled in me the importance of rigour and accountability. He kept me honest about my career path and direction when I was fumbling around in life in my early twenties.
What's the best piece of business advice you've ever received?
I grew up in the country and when I was about 10 years old, I had a couple of horse-riding lessons with a family friend. She told me that the direction you point your body and attention in is the direction the horse will travel. I have never forgotten that lesson throughout my life. Wherever I pointed my efforts (for good or for bad!), eventually, I got there. It wasn't easy – I decided to personally learn every lesson on the way – but it was worthwhile.
What advice would you pass on to someone starting out in your area?
Your network is the answer to all your career questions.