8 of the most influential fintech entrepreneurs you need to follow in 2020
The fintech sector has an impressive range of entrepreneurs who are striving to push the boundaries as to what is possible in financial services. The following are 8 of the most influential and inspiring fintech figures who are changing the game right now…
Catherine Wines (WorldRemit)
In addition to being a qualified accountant with extensive company board and commercial experience within the money transfer industry, Catherine Wines is also one of the founding members of World Remit.
This innovative online money transfer service founded in 2010 has more than 4 million users and provides secure international payment services to migrant communities across the globe. Catherine Wines has stated that both she and her co-founders were convinced that digital innovation could enable more efficient and lower-cost global money transfers.
Wines’ current board responsibilities are focused on compliance and corporate governance, and she also regularly represents WorldRemit on a range of issues, including women in business, innovation and fintech.
Kristo Käärmann (TransferWise)
Kristo Käärmann is the co-founder and CEO of TransferWise, which is a peer-to-peer money transfer business operating on an international level. TransferWise made waves within the industry by being the first to provide everyone with access to the real mid-market exchange rate without incurring traditional banking fees.
Before co-founding TransferWise, Kristo Käärmann worked in a management consulting role with PricewaterhouseCoopers and Deloitte Consulting. In this role, he worked directly with European insurers and banks to modernise their systems. The surprising levels of inefficiencies he discovered motivated him to team up with Taavet Hinrikus. Taavet was the director of strategy at Skype, helping to create a seamless system that would facilitate cross-border money management.
Tom Blomfield (Monzo)
Tom Blomfield is the current CEO of Monzo, which is an innovative bank specifically designed for smartphones. Before the birth of Monzo, he founded GoCardless, a fintech startup that went on to generate $25m.
In addition to regularly giving talks on subjects including the future of fintech and banking, Tom Blomfield has also been nominated by the European Commission as one of the Top 5 Entrepreneurs Under 30.
He puts much of his success down to launching the ideal package of services, pitched at the right audience, at precisely the right time. Tom has revealed that social and financial inclusion forms a large part of Monzo’s ethos. This led to the customer service team adopting a genuine and helpful tone of voice that customers value.
Norris Koppel (Monese)
Monese is a service that allows customers to efficiently open a business bank account online in the UK via a mobile app. Norris Koppel is the founder and CEO of Monese and decided to set up the service after personally experiencing difficulties opening a UK bank account.
A prolific fintech entrepreneur, Norris Koppel’s knowledge of the sector helped him to develop breakthrough technology with the ability to validate a customer’s identity in real-time. This unique technology enables Monese to provide easy access to accounts for hundreds of thousands of migrants, expats, and anyone struggling to open a bank account.
Dana Buys (CloudOne)
After securing success in the software sector, Dana Buys has gone on to create and lead CloudOne, which offers a selection of cloud-based hero products for clients in the retail and hospitality industries. His passion for efficient and effective customer service led him to develop a solution that would improve this process, delivering significant gains for both consumers and businesses.
Often described as a ‘serial disruptor’ Dana Buys has founded and sold three innovative and highly ground-breaking tech companies since the early 1980s. During the intervening years, he has been closely involved with every significant advancement in the computing industry.
Sucharita Mukherjee (Kaleidofin)
Sucharita Mukherjee is dedicated to helping underbanked customers to realise their real-life goals. In addition to being an inclusive fintech leader, she is the co-founder and CEO of Kaleidofin, which delivers personalised financial solutions directly to under-served customers.
Sucharita Mukherjee is also the CEO of IFMR Holdings and Vice-Chair of IFMR Trust. Previously she has headed efforts to create structured finance and credit derivatives for Morgan Stanley corporates in London. Additionally, she is the founder of IFMR Investments and IFMR Capital and takes pride in creating access to capital markets for informal sector finance and financial inclusion.
Barnaby Hussey-Yeo (Cleo)
Barnaby Hussey-Yeo is a data scientist with a diverse skill set that stretches across finance, technology and machine learning. One of 2019’s Forbes 30 Under 30 tech entrepreneurs, he believes that banking data is one of the final bastions of untapped information.
In addition to possessing significant experience in generating actionable insights utilising large scale data sets and an ability to solve complex problems, he co-founded and is the current CEO of Cleo AI. Cleo is an artificial intelligence-based startup which aims to help people to manage their finances more diligently and efficiently. The company has generated $14m from a range of leading entrepreneurs and investors in Europe and has developed an active user base of 700,000 in just two years.
Julia Kurnia (Zidisha)
Julia Kurnia is the founder of Zidisha, the world’s first person-to-person lending platform specifically for people in developing countries. Zidisha was built entirely using crowdfunded capital. The platform allows internet-capable, low-income young adults in Asia and Africa to crowdfund education or business loans from individuals across the world.
Traditional microfinance typically has high associated costs, and Zidisha solves this by contacting borrowers and lenders directly, eliminating intermediary banks in the process.