Employee Spotlight: Martyna Dudek
September has been a big month for our Women in Crypto campaign. We hosted our first ever WIC live event at Level39 last week where we heard from six panellists on the ways in which crypto and digitisation are changing the world.
But Women in Crypto is more than a one-time project – it's a campaign we’re passionate about all year round. We recently announced that nominations for the 2021 Rising Women in Crypto Power List had opened which gives you the opportunity to support, nominate and recognise women from around the crypto sector and all their achievements. We like to practice what we preach and continue to support the amazing women working at Wirex, and so we’re back with our employee spotlight and this month all eyes are on Martyna Dudek!
How did you first get involved in the crypto space?
I was first exposed to the crypto space in law school when trying to make sense of the enforceability of smart contracts in their early days, which now underpin so much of the DeFi space. I was also studying Intellectual Property law at the time, where blockchain was creeping in to revolutionise recording of ownership and transfer of title, today we see a lot of that in NFT’s.
When I joined Wirex in early 2020, I was excited to dig deep into how blockchain is integrated into consumer-facing products. Working in crypto payments was probably the most challenging of spheres to dive into because of the scrutiny of financial regulators, but that’s what made it the most exciting. I haven’t been able to tear myself away from this industry ever since.
What achievement are you most proud of?
Having been at Wirex for just over a year and a half, I had the chance to see products developed from concept to launch. This is not very common in payments services outside of fintech and it is not easy for the legal function to keep up with such short development cycles. I am proud of supporting a lot of product development from the very first stages, like the Send Money to Contacts or X-Accounts features which we fearlessly managed to launch across several jurisdictions.
Why do you think more women should get involved in crypto?
At Wirex, we really shape the industry as we go along, not only by our contributions to setting the industry standards but also by our interactions with regulators, consultations and feedback to our partners and service providers. In an industry that is still so malleable, we should try to include as many diverse voices as possible and women must be a part of that.
It is no secret that in tech-dominated sectors it’s easier than ever to engrave biases. Wirex is very conscious that the digital assets consumers are more often male than female. We saw that very clearly in the research report The Future of Money: Cryptocurrency Adoption in 2021 which Wirex conducted together with the Stellar Development Foundation (SDF). Including women in our ranks and providing networking opportunities such as the Women in Crypto: Tech, Innovation & Digitisation event, coming up this September, are great steps towards fuelling diversity in our field.
What advice would you give to someone who’s interested in learning about crypto?
I would suggest that they are not too discouraged by the complexity of the tech in the background, it is very useful to understand how DLT and different protocols actually work, but you don’t need a degree in computer science to get into crypto. What it takes is a whole lot of curiosity, it is so fast-paced that you have to be brave enough to ask questions, everyone in this space is really learning as they go.
Where do you see the crypto industry in 5 years’ time?
Right now, we are starting to see Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Regulations catch up with the industry, something that I think most of the actors in crypto have really been craving. Serious crypto players are keen to get behind the regulations, in payments especially, we want customers to use our platform safely and confidently. Various jurisdictions are also beginning to incorporate crypto into consumer law in areas like advertising and financial compensation, it is also coupled with increasingly strong enforcement plans. While it may be a challenge for the industry at first, in the long term it will be a big step to removing some of the boundaries to mainstream adoption.
What’s more, growing institutional funding flowing into the space together with positive feedback from central banks on CBDC’s and stablecoins are also very optimistic signals for the industry. I think we can be very hopeful that some of this confidence will soon be enough to outweigh much if the bad reputation and concerns from crypto’s early days.
In case you missed it, we announced that nominations have been opened for Wirex’s Rising Women in Crypto Power List 2021! The Power List endeavours to celebrate incredible women in the sector, recognise their achievements, and inspire other women to get involved themselves. We’re calling out for individuals to nominate themselves or someone they know, with judging criteria based on their achievements, potential, influence, ambition, leadership skills and innovation.
Think you know someone who deserves some recognition? Whether they’re a crypto veteran or a new rising star, we want to recognise women from all around the crypto industry – no achievement is too great or small!