Luke Sully, founder and CEO of Custody Digital Group joins the show to talk about his path into digital assets from an IT security background, building a business through aligning the interests of talented people, why he's basing his operations in Ireland.....and his love of the merengue!
This episode is kindly sponsored by Ireland’s fintech and financial services recruitment specialists, Top Tier Recruitment. If you would like an intro to the team at Top Tier Recruitment, please click here.
This week we’re catching up with Luke Sully, the founder and CEO of Custody Digital Group (CDG), who are providing financial institutions with a single point of governance for securing and managing digital assets. Luke and Pete Townsend connected in early 2019, and they've stayed in touch since then with their mutual interests in all things digital assets and Luke's plans for setting up an Irish operation for CDG. Some of the highlights include:
- Channeling Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz from a16z - if you try to solve a big problem in a really big market, then you have a great opportunity to build a really scalable business, and that’s what we saw with CDG.
- As a founder, you have a vision for how you think you can do things and how you think you can solve problems and help create a better way of doing things, or for serving a market that you can see that other people can’t. It’s just an itch you have to scratch.
- Everyone has the capacity to start to build, but you never really know what the next week or month is going to look like, so you have to be able to accept a certain amount of chaos in your life and how you build a business isn't always as linear as you would like. So there’s a huge amount of resilience that you have to draw on on a fairly regular basis.
- Being a founder is about getting really good people around you, making sure they’re all aligned as to why they’re involved, and aligning what they want to do with the vision and the objective of the company. If you can align everyone’s objectives and interests around that core theme, it will make your life easier.
- What people don't realize is that really good startups get spun out of other startups. There are folks that will be working in high growth technology companies that understand the playbook, have a finer sense of risk and take calculated risks, that then put teams together and go and build companies. That provides a really long tail that I think Ireland will start to enjoy.
- With regulation, it’s not only making sure you’re compliant, but using it as a competitive advantage. If you can get it right and read the tea leaves properly, it allows you to work across jurisdictions that give you a broader palette and a broader client base.
- How CDG’s go-to-market strategy is aligned in terms of the different kinds of digital assets (cryptocurrencies vs. security tokens)
- Being a founder is a constant surprise - each day is different and brings with it a set of challenges that you may not have expected before.
- Build a startup is kind of like climbing a mountain, the moment you start looking down just to give yourself a pat on the back about how far you’ve come, it can look a bit scary, so it’s best to keep putting one foot in front of the other.
- Absorbing pressure and becoming more resilient with each passing month.
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