Karen Wu

Executive Assistant
SydneyAustralia

What’s the essential role of a founder?

I think there are three: organisational strategy, selecting the right people to join the team and fundraising. I remember at BMY Group, we met the founders of Clearmatch, a fintech marketplace which had all three: the organisation had a clear vision, the management team was originally from SocietyOne with sophisticated industry experience and they did well fundraising.

What’s your passion outside of work?

Film and television. My favourite show is Westworld, which embeds the elements of AI vs reality, illusion vs truth and philosophy. I like shows with a good story line, that encourages the audience to engage in self-reflection. I like to critique entertainment, and recently wrote a review on House of Cards.

Most insightful book?

I read 'Principles' last year by Ray Dalio. What inspired me is that although Dalio is building a hedge fund, he is an extremely risk-controlled person; he followed his principles all the time and passed on these principles to his employees and the organisation.

What was the greatest lesson an early job taught you?

There is no such thing as a small thing. Doing small things right will lead to successful, bigger things.

What’s the most underappreciated skill in founders?

I was living in China when Jack Ma founded Alibaba, and I remember how relentlessly hard the media was on the business. Founders need to be tough. I think their ability to maintain their spirits and persistence is critical.

What keeps you motivated?

Unlike large organisations which can rely on a well-established structure, for small to medium sized companies, individuals play a crucial role. At Square Peg, we all work hard and autonomously, but towards a common goal, which I like.

What does the future hold?

Top performing VC-backed Australian companies. I also suspect that our region will be more integrated. Chinese investors will notice that Australia is no longer a small player in fintech and technology and be attracted to the opportunities here.

What in your childhood helped you get where you are today?

As a small town girl I’ve always wanted to go to the bigger cities, see different people and experience different cultures. This has driven me to where I am today.
Square Peg Capital Pty Ltd (ACN 164 352 229) is an Authorised Representative of Victoria Capital Pty Ltd (ACN 159 228 314) AFSL 428989