BTS Profiles: John Colvin

Blue Trading System’s is a family of traders, technologists, innovators and committed professionals. The women and men that work here want to build something that not only meets demand but advances the industry. We are sharp, loyal and strategic.

Through 2018, we wanted to highlight the people behind the name. These are the ones applying their knowledge, dedicating their time and investing their money in Blue Trading Systems. We invite you to learn more about the people building our solutions.

What is your name, title and responsibilities at Blue Trading Systems?
Name: John Colvin
Title: Software Engineer
Responsibilities: Front-end, UI design

How did you get into this field of derivatives trading? Trader or technologist?

Before working at BTS, I was neither trader nor technologist, but after graduating from UNC with a music degree in 2011, I needed a job. I have always enjoyed solving puzzles, and took a few comp-sci courses in college, so computer programming seemed a natural fit. Getting a foot in the door at BTS was easy - my dad, John “Trevor” Colvin Sr., is the CEO. And so it began.

The workplace environment at BTS, rich with highly-skilled and experienced programmers, could not have been a better a place for me to hone my craft. Taha, in particular, took me under his wing, and helped me develop into a soldier of the BTS dev army.

From your perspective, can you describe the relationship between BTS and its clients?

As a smaller company, we are able to provide the intimate support our larger competitors can’t. Our support team has been here for a long time, and has the robust knowledge of our system that only comes from years of experience. Support and devs work in lock-step, so any technical questions or concerns a client may have will receive expert-level feedback, straight from the software engineer who actually designed that part of the system.

How has BTS evolved since you started at the company?
We’ve had our share of growing pains over the years. Formerly Blue Capital Group, we learned the differences between designing software for our own traders (in house), from designing software to be licensed out to various clients, each with their own requirements. However, we do not have any regrets. “Legacy code” may have stifled our progress for some time, but it also gifted us the experience necessary to make the superb product we proudly call “Spark.”

What are a few challenges the industry is currently facing?
I’m not actually a trader, so take my answer for what it’s worth. I think the biggest challenge is the unknown. AI is just a tiny bud, getting ready to blossom into something we have never seen. Quantum computing might not even be a bud yet, but it is definitely a seed, and it will change everything. Everything. we do. I also don’t think people are as scared of crypto-currency as they should be. Google “what will quantum computing do to cryptocurrency” if you are interested.

What is your favorite piece of advice regarding trading, technology, the markets, leadership?
“Have a plan.” - It’s very simple, good advice usually is.

If you had to pick, what animal would you be and why?
That’s easy: Saltwater Crocodile.
  • They don’t need anything from anybody
  • They are highly intelligent
  • When the plague of all plagues descended upon the earth some 60 million years ago to wipe out the dinosaurs and clean the slate, crocodiles evaded God’s eraser
  • They have solar panels on their backs
  • They will stalk their prey for weeks, as though they were all trained in the special forces, learning everything about it’s routine, crafting a perfect plan of assault
  • Their heads/bodies are designed for absolute stealth hunting, as they stalk their prey, the crocodile is almost invisible above the surface, only showing it’s eyes, and nostrils
  • Everything about them is pure efficiency
  • their jaw clamps down on prey with 3700 psi of pure stopping power; however, absolutely no muscle is wasted on its ability to open it (that would be more biomass to feed)
  • when they prepare to strike, they sit very still, and let all the blood in their bodies rush to their jaw and tail (the main muscles that are used to strike). They shift several baseball sized rocks (which they have swallowed for this purpose) to the back of their stomach to set their bodies at the ideal angle for attack
  • I could go on and on...

Have a Question?


318 W Adams St
Suite 1724
Chicago, IL 60606
Telephone: (919) 913-0850

Chapel Hill

194 Finley Golf Course Road
Suite 100
Chapel Hill, NC 27517

Follow Us

Twitter: @bts_software
LinkedIn: Blue Trading Systems
Facebook: Blue Trading Systems