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Welcome to the third article in our series, the faces of Bitpanda Pro. After introducing Edward Cindric, Business Development Manager and Natalie Tyurin, Senior Product Manager, we spoke to Konstantin Kraus, Team Lead - Institutional Sales, about his role at Bitpanda Pro.
Do you remember the first time you heard about Bitpanda Pro? What motivated you to apply and to join the team?
I learned about Bitpanda when I was travelling through India in 2016 with friends. Bitcoin was around €600 back then and it was rather complicated to buy crypto. Later on, a friend at Google kept telling me about Bitpanda in 2017 but it wasn’t until autumn 2019 that I wanted to return to Vienna.
The combination of finance with an emphasis on building a long-lasting and trusting relationship with customers, all while being located in Vienna, was really appealing to me. It is fascinating to experience the convergence of traditional finance and crypto. We are writing history and people can never believe it when they hear we are 280 people in Vienna, not in Silicon Valley, or at least in London.
What were some of the stations in your career before you joined Bitpanda?
I have worked and studied in 10 cities over the past 10 years prior to joining Bitpanda. As Investment Manager at Newport Group, I had the opportunity to learn from amazing founders and to serve as a Board Observer in three portfolio companies.
At DTCP, Deutsche Telekom’s private equity and venture capital unit, I learned about fundraising and the technical aspects of blockchain, while I learned the importance of sales as Head of Business Development at Foodora Austria when we launched in the Austrian market in 2015.
I also worked for the World Economic Forum and had the opportunity to attend the Annual Meetings in Davos from 2014 to 2016 before I was invited to join the Forum’s Global Shapers community in 2017. I began my career with internships at AXA Private Equity (Ardian), Deutsche Bank’s European Energy Efficiency Fund, and Société Générale’s Investment Banking Division.
I am grateful for the journey and can proudly say that I am deeply passionate about my job. A client-facing leadership role in finance at the hottest scale up in Europe really is the jackpot for me.
What are your favourite features of Bitpanda Pro as an exchange?
We take pride in all of the things going on in the background that enable traders to trust Bitpanda Pro as a secure, reliable and compliant exchange. We also get great feedback from users on our API - it’s pretty cool to see the huge scope of things that different businesses and traders alike are able to set up on this side of things.
We also have some useful, advanced order types and recently added the ‘Dead Man’s Switch’ into the API set-up. These features can be used across all our markets, with EUR, CHF, GBP and TRY as our current fiat gateways. Whilst not necessarily a user feature, I’d also point out the adaptability of Bitpanda Pro: we have a dedicated team of talented developers that are able to add features or pairs quickly, meaning we can really take on user feedback and keep developing Bitpanda Pro into a stronger and stronger platform.
Do you have any strategies you could share with us on how you tackle a typical day of work?
There’s no such thing as a typical day of work! Do less and focus on what is important. The greatest leaders do not spend all their time back to back in meetings but take the time to reflect and think about what moves the needle.
And what are some of your team’s greatest strengths?
One of the fortes of our team at Bitpanda is our diversity. We all come from different backgrounds and have many different strengths, experiences and styles. When we all combine our skills, we all complement one another and together, we become a dynamic unit that we like to think of as pretty formidable and able to take on any challenges.
This manifests itself in our product and service offering, meaning we are able to provide clients of any profile with our in-depth skills and expertise. Alongside that, we are creative and enjoy working and learning together - we all bring something unique to the table and we definitely take advantage of this!
Where do you see the greatest challenges and opportunities for cryptocurrency exchanges on a global scale?
The number one challenge is navigating the growing and increasingly competitive landscape of digital asset trading and investment platforms. There are more than 300 exchanges all over the world, so it’s our responsibility to make Bitpanda Pro stand out and offer unparalleled value if we wish to succeed.
We are making great steps at accomplishing this by having a strong track record in stability and security, by providing competitive and transparent fees, as well as focusing on building personal relationships with the customer. All of this makes Bitpanda Pro a great choice for businesses wishing to enter the digital asset trading space.
Of course, regulation is also a major topic and I truly believe that Bitpanda Pro is the undisputed leader in Europe when it comes to providing a fully-compliant service to our customers.