Q&A with Rüya Karausta, Regulatory Counsel
We sat down with Rüya Karausta, Regulatory Counsel at BCB Group, to discuss her job, BCB Group, and the challenges facing the crypto industry.
Q: Describe your job role at BCB Group.
Rüya: I sit in the legal team and assist our Co-Founder and General Counsel, Olly Tonkin, alongside Agathe Laissus who is our European General Counsel and Will McFadden who is our trainee solicitor. When I think about my job, I tend to think of myself as serving each of the different departments within BCB Group, who I see as the legal team’s clients. I aim to work closely with all of our departments to provide quality, accurate legal advice in a timely manner. When we look to give advice in the legal team, we give it with a view to manage the risk of the company, to promote efficiency and to promote the wider strategy of the Group.
Q: What does a typical work day look like for you?
Rüya: In my role, any given day will be very different. Sometimes I spend the whole day fielding questions from other departments, where there’s a regulatory, contractual, or any legal element that needs to be resolved. There are other days where I’m focusing entirely on a single document, which could be updating and refreshing a policy or procedure, or preparing a training document/session for one of the teams on the different legal implications of matters relevant to them. Other times I might be working on developing our suite of technologies, for example enhancing our contract management capabilities. My day to day tasks vary a lot which is really different from a lot of roles I have been in previously. At BCB Group, I get a much greater variety in the work. I am doing and learning something new, not just every day, but actually every couple of hours! This is one of the elements I enjoy the most about my job.
Q: Why did you choose to go into this industry?
Rüya: Previously, I was working in private practice dealing with disputes and investigations in the financial services sector. I got to the stage in my career where I wanted to get experience of working in a smaller scale-up, as opposed to the large corporations I had been working in, including Eversheds Sutherland, Lloyds Banking Group and the Metropolitan Police. The drive behind this was to experience working with a smaller group of people who are all focused on achieving the same goal. I was also really keen to join a company from the early days of its journey to help develop and shape the vision. At the same time, I was getting really excited about crypto as whilst working in the financial services sector, I kept hearing more and more about it and how it was changing the landscape of money. I was really keen to learn more about the industry and be a part of it, so for all of these reasons BCB Group was the perfect fit.
Q: From a crypto perspective, what are the major themes you are seeing coming out of the legal sector at the moment?
Rüya: Crypto has certainly been in the spotlight over the recent months, and as a result of this there are a lot of discussions around regulation and learning from the errors of others. It is a really exciting time for development and I have been closely following and keeping up-to-date with regulatory advances. A particular theme that interests me is looking at different jurisdictions’ approaches to regulating the crypto world – there are some interesting developments currently happening in Hong Kong, Dubai and India!
Q: What do you think the biggest challenges facing the industry are right now and how do you think BCB Group is addressing those challenges?
Rüya: So as I mentioned, regulatory change is the hot topic at the moment and a challenge for the industry as a whole. Within the BCB legal and compliance teams, one of our utmost priorities is monitoring the regulatory landscape and adapting to the regulator’s requests. We are particularly focussed on delivering regulatory resilience and establishing open, transparent positive relationships with lead regulators.
Q: What is your favourite thing about working at BCB Group?
Rüya: Immediately, I have to say the people. Everyone is incredibly approachable, no question is ever too small, and everyone has a huge amount of time for each other. I think it’s also a really great environment to develop professionally. As I said, I’m learning new things all the time, not just from a legal perspective, but also in relation to crypto which can be challenging but incredibly motivating as well. It definitely makes the work exciting and encourages me to keep learning.
Q: If you had to describe BCB Group in one word, what would it be?
Rüya: ‘Daring’ is the word that comes to mind.
Q: What do you think makes BCB Group unique?
Rüya: The obvious answer is the products that we’re offering to our customers which are unique to the market along with our business model. Aside from that, I would again have to bring the question back to the people at BCB Group. Everyone here really wants to see the company grow, they’re passionate about what they do and are invested in the future vision. I’ve never worked anywhere where everyone is so positive about the work and is completely on the same page in terms of direction. It’s definitely a nice environment to work in.
Q: What are your interests outside of BCB Group?
Rüya: I currently only work 4 days a week for BCB Group, as I have an arrangement where I spend an additional day volunteering for the Met Police as a Special Constable. This involves being out on the street, tackling crime, dealing with enquiries, and conducting interviews. It is obviously still a law-based interest but it’s something that I love doing that allows me to get out from behind the desk and gain invaluable experience. BCB Group has been incredibly supportive in allowing me to make this work within my work schedule.