FinTech Buzz Article – On International Women’s Day Meet the Standout 35 Powerlist

8th March 2019 | FinTech Buzz, News


Innovate Finance recently launched The Women in FinTech Powerlist 2018 to shine a spotlight on the women leading the way for change in financial services. We also introduced a new “Standout 35” category, highlighting the achievements of some truly amazing women in FinTech who have delivered so much over the previous 12 months. In honour of International Women's Day we wanted to provide you a simple way to get to know them!

We want to congratulate all these ladies for their hard work and achievements. We hope you can join many of these fantastic ladies at the annual Innovate Finance Global Summit (29th -30th April) 2019 in London. It is a world-renowned gathering and global platform for FinTech. 2000 senior delegates. 300 FinTechs. 200 world-class speakers. Tickets can be booked here


Anne Boden:

      • Category: Senior Leaders
      • Bio: Anne is the first and only female founder of a UK bank. A computer scientist by training, she spotted the potential for digital technology to revolutionise retail banking following the 2008 financial crisis. She built a digital banking platform scratch, offering a mobile phone banking app with smart money management tools and created a banking platform that makes Starling’s banking and payments infrastructure available to third parties. She raised $70 million and obtained a full banking licence in 2016, launching Starling’s first account in 2017 which now has more than 460,000 customers. She has disrupted the UK current account market for personal, joint and business accounts as well as the B2B payments industry. In 2018, Boden received an MBE for her services to financial technology. Anne lives and breathes Starling, but if she had to do something very different it would be something entrepreneurial in the application of machine learning to fabric and design.
      • Position: Founder & CEO, Starling Bank

Axelle Sznajer:

      • Category: Professional & Financial Services
      • Bio: Axelle raises awareness of the importance of the FinTech Tech-enabled industry and its impact on the broader FS space, guiding colleagues and board members to approach this not just as a buzzword, but as a distinct opportunity to adopt new business models and view innovation/disruption as an opportunity. Ensuring adequate diversity representation on shortlists for every mandate remains an important consideration for Axelle. She is focusing on bringing FinTech diversity on boards (including several appointments to prominent boards in the UK) and coaching female FinTech talent to support their leadership journey. Axelle brings diversity of geographic, business and cultural experiences, and speaks a number of languages. She also supports social welfare and education charities, encouraging women going into technology.
      • Position: Partner, Head of FinTech, Egon Zehnder

April Rudin:

      • Category: Marketers & Communicators
      • Bio: Recognised as one of the top strategists for financial services and wealth management sectors, April is distinguished by her ability to forecast and leverage critical trends and by her expertise in content marketing and digital/social media strategy. April founded the Rudin Group in 2008 to design bespoke marketing campaigns for some of the world's leading wealth management firms, FinTechs, and family offices, helping hundreds of FinTech firms to get clients, become funded or sold. Recognised by IBM as an Influencer in wealth management and FinTech, April has created an extensive repertoire of thought leadership pieces and is regularly-featured in the Huffington Post, American Banker, CFA Enterprising Investor, Family Wealth Report, Fundfire, Wealthmanagement.Com. She heads the editorial board for NexChange, a global fintech start-up based in Hong Kong and is a Board member for Mirador LLC - a performance reporting platform for U/HNW, family offices. A member of the Family Wealth Report and Private Asset Management advisory boards, April also serves as a judge for FT Wealthtech awards, Family Wealth Report Industry Awards, and Canada’s Wealth Professional Awards. She is the mother of two sons who are quick to point out that they considered her an Influencer well before IBM did!
      • Position: Founder & CEO, The Rudin Group

Catherine Wines:

      • Category: Senior Leaders
      • Bio: Catherine co-founded WorldRemit in 2010, convinced that digital innovation could revolutionise the global money transfer market by enabling faster, lower-cost money transfers around the world. She disrupted a $600 billion industry which had under-served millions of migrants across the globe. In light of her experience, Catherine has become a leader in shaping digital policy in developed and emerging markets, speaking to the United Nations and the World Bank on using regulation as a tool to advance financial inclusion around the world. Catherine is a renowned speaker at FinTech conferences around the world as she is a passionate advocate for financial inclusion and women in tech. She also enjoys mentoring newcomers within the fintech industry and is the Pathway Leader for the FinTech Entrepreneurship Specialist Pathway at Cambridge Judge Launchpad. She also acts as a board adviser to FinTech-for-good company Beam, that supports homeless people through training and work using crowdfunding.
      • Position: Co-Founder, World Remit

Charlotte Wood

      • Category: Professional & Financial Services
      • Bio: As the first Head of Innovation at Schroders, Charlotte has been instrumental in developing the company’s global strategic approach to innovation and setting the agenda for FinTech engagement across the organisation. She established Cobalt, a ‘Startup in Residence’ programme, to enable Schroders to engage with early-stage fintech companies more effectively. This was the first example of an accelerator programme created by an asset manager in the UK, and was shortlisted for ‘Innovation of the Year’ at the Financial News Asset Management Awards 2018. Charlotte has particularly focused on enabling better collaboration between startups and corporates, but also between large institutions. She regularly speaks on these topics at conferences and industry roundtables, and has built strong and long-running relationships with VCs and accelerators across multiple countries to ensure Schroders has access to the latest innovations in tech solutions. Passionate about improving diversity in tech and financial services, Charlotte delivered the keynote speech at Tomorrow’s Tech Leaders Today, a conference focused on informing female students about careers in technology. She also co-led the organisation of a two-day coding workshop for girls aged 5-16 with Stemettes, encouraging female students to consider further education and careers in STEM.
      • Position: Head of Innovation and FinTech Alliances, Schroders

Cordelia Kafetz:

      • Category: Policy Makers & Regulatory Experts
      • Bio: During 2018 Cordelia established and led the Bank of England’s Fintech Hub, implementing an approach that recognises FinTech's immense potential value to the UK, while balancing this against the need to protect the financial system. Cordelia set the Bank’s strategy on FinTech convincing those inside and outside the Bank that FinTech and financial stability can be mutually beneficial through easing frictions in the economy, such as costly cross-border payments. Specific impacts include allowing FinTech innovation to flourish in a way in which risks are mitigated. The success of this approach is evidenced by FinTech firms choosing the UK. For example, the Bank of England has authorised 38 new banks since 2013, compared to one in the preceding 30 years. In addition, other central banks have replicated the Bank’s approach to FinTech. Cordelia was also a key member of the Government’s Crypto-assets Taskforce that set the UK’s policy on crypto-assets. Prior to her this role, Cordelia led the Bank’s Future of Money team and was responsible for research into the future of cash, crypto-assets and central bank digital currencies. At the Financial Services Authority, Cordelia supervised a number of banks and building societies during the financial crisis.
      • Position: Head of FinTech Hub, Bank of England

Diana Biggs:

      • Category: Senior Leaders
      • Bio: Diana supports the collaboration of FinTech and traditional financial services across HSBC, where she leads on business model innovation, focused on areas including open banking, digital identity and the use of emerging technologies such as AI and blockchain. In addition to her role at HSBC, she is a Head Tutor for the Oxford Said Blockchain Strategy Programme, on the Board of the World Economic Forum’s Digital Leaders of Europe, and a mentor with accelerators Katapult Impact and Gaza Sky Geeks. Her work in global development and financial inclusion spans more than fifteen years and five continents, including roles at the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), Oliver Wyman Financial Services, and Uphold, as well as fellowships with and Anthemis Group. Previously as Co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer for e-commerce platform and social enterprise Soko, she worked to develop economic opportunities for small-scale artisans - particularly women - across East Africa.
      • Position: Head of Digital Innovation, HSBC

Emily Morse:

      • Category: Investors
      • Bio: Emily is part of the Fintech team within Actis, a US$15 billion AUM emerging markets focused investment firm. She has helped the team to deploy over US$1 billion of growth equity in the Fintech space across 11 platforms and 30 businesses in Asia, Africa and Latin America, focusing on Payments, Lending and Data verticals. As the first female investment professional within Actis’ Fintech team, Emily is in a unique position to promote diversity within her sector, particularly externally where she helps to positively shape perceptions about women in the industry, bringing a new approach to building relationships, negotiating successfully and pricing risk in the investments. She actively backs and promotes female executives within her portfolio companies and encourages the hiring of female talent into the Fintech sector. Internally, she has helped to launch a Summer Associate internship programme, whilst pushing the firm to improve its outreach - finding and actively encouraging women to apply to roles within the Fintech team.
      • Position: Investment Professional, Actis Group

Eva Wong:

      • Category: Senior Leaders
      • Bio: Traditionally, good financial advice has been available to people who have the funds to pay for it. Those who need assistance the most, however, have struggled to access advice and understand their financial options. Eva co-founded Borrowell to change all this, coming up with the vision to provide Canadians with free credit scores and making crucial credit information more accessible. Borrowell was a catalyst for Canada’s big banks to be more innovative and make credit information available to their customers and, today, three of the five big banks are offering credit scores to their customers. She speaks frequently at conferences and in the media, educating about FinTech, as well as advocating for more diversity in tech and startups. Diversity is a core principle upon which Borrowell is founded and she believes this has helped in its commercial success. The firm is made up of 47% women, while the management team is 50%.
      • Position: Co-Founder and COO, Borrowell

Faith Reynolds:

      • Category: Policy Makers & Regulatory Experts
      • Bio: Faith is an independent consumer finance expert. She is a member of the Financial Conduct Authority’s Financial Services Consumer Panel, where she is the lead for technology and innovation. She acts as the Independent Consumer Representative on the Open Banking Implementation Entity Steering Group and authored the widely-read report: Open Banking: A Consumer Perspective, which catalysed the development of innovative FinTech propositions. Faith has been pioneering consumer representation in paytech, bringing consumer organisations up to speed and providing consumer-oriented feedback on key technological issues facing the industry. Last year, she published the Consumer Manifesto for Open Banking with 17 consumer organisations. She initiated the Code Collaboration with industry bodies to start delivering a Code of Conduct for Open Banking. Faith helped establish the New Payment System Operator (now called Pay.UK) and is now an Independent Non Executive for CASS at Pay.UK. Faith is particularly interested in technology and innovation and how it can be used to help rebalance power between firms and consumers, and improve regulation itself. Previously, Faith was on HMT’s Financial Inclusion Taskforce and established Toynbee Hall's financial inclusion work in the heart of London’s East End. She was awarded the Clore Social Leadership Fellowship in 2010.
      • Position: Consumer Expert, Independent

Felicia Kodderitzch:

      • Category: Rising Stars
      • Bio: Felicia works at Octopus Labs where she gets to build and scale FinTech businesses. She is responsible for building up the operations & customer offering for smart savings solution Octopus Cash. In addition, she has recently been tasked with helping launch the first electric-taxi pay-per-mile financing platform. Felicia was born in Italy (to German parents) and raised in the USA and Vietnam. At an early age she decided that contributing to social impact would be a priority in her life. She has an academic background in Economics & Politics (BA) and International Public Policy (MSc) and now intends to use the entrepreneurial and digital skills she is picking up at Octopus to contribute to a more sustainable, fairer society. She has worked with the Social Mobility Foundation to organise work experience placements for 65+ students from low-income backgrounds, introducing them to technology & data in a Fintech context. She has also been selected by Octopus to spend a month in Burma working with an education charity. In her free-time, Felicia is a farm-hand at a hydroponic farm in London and an aspiring circus student.
      • Position: Business and Operations Manager, Octopus Labs

Felicia Meyerowitz Singh:

      • Category: Senior Leaders
      • Bio: Frustrated by the lack of resources available to SMEs versus global corporates, Felicia decided to do something about this and co-founded Akoni to address this inequality. Akoni has been widely recognised as the cutting edge of innovation in solutions and part of driving change in the banking technology sector. Felicia's commitment to women in technology has been recognised by publications such as Everywomen Innovator finalists, Business Cloud's female FinTech Disruptor and Forbes and ITPRO calling Akoni a top 10 startup and Top 100 Influential Fintech’s. Akoni is committed to diversity and fully represents this in their current team, with multiple countries and cultures part of the DNA and 40% of Akoni’s team are women. Most recently Felicia spoke at the Treasury Leaders Summit and FinTech Connect about how open banking and open data are changing the treasurer's world and what this means for SMEs and corporates especially post-Brexit. Akoni is FCA regulated, working with 18 banks/FIs and provides solutions direct to business and on a B2B2x basis to financial institutions.
      • Position: Co-Founder and CEO, Akoni

Flora Coleman:

      • Category: Policy Makers & Regulatory Experts
      • Bio: Flora Coleman has been at TransferWise as their global Head of Government Relations for nearly three years. This follows a decade of senior political advisory work, including nearly three years as a Special Adviser to the Leader and Chief Whip in the House of Lords. She has played a key role in delivering the Cross-Border payments regulation, pushing for global transparency and to secure a law in the EU which means that from Q1 2020 the 500 million people in the EU will know what it costs to make an international payment. This law will lead to an addition €4bn in the European economy from day one. During her career she has helped coordinate and has participated in international social action projects in Croatia, Turkey, Bangladesh, and Bosnia. Flora also advises start ups on political relations and is on the Steering Board of Coadec - the policy voice of start ups. She is an active mentor and is helping secure the talent pipeline for TransferWise through her involvement in TechHub and Coadec. Flora has also been driving an internal apprentice programme which will launch in 2019.
      • Position: Head of Government Relations, TransferWise

Gemma Godfrey:

      • Category: Marketers & Communicators
      • Bio: Gemma successfully founded, built, launched and sold Moola, a digital saving & investment service to FTSE-listed JLT, all within 3 years. Since the acquisition, she has successfully integrated the team and technology into JLT, showcasing how new FinTech startups and traditional financial services institutions can successfully work together. Focused on innovation, her firm has continually provided new services for the UK retail market including: diversified currency-hedged portfolios for a £50 minimum; tax-aware investing; and expanded the reach of ethical portfolios for the mainstream public. She led Moola to achieve FCA authorisation and launched with a user journey that is so simple and intuitive, it has been completed in under 5 minutes. Gemma makes money engaging in videos on Moola’s Knowledge Centre and in the mainstream media (ITV, BBC, Sky News, LBC, The Times etc). She has also encouraged the image of FinTech as a force for good, is a Commissioner on Grant Thornton's Vibrant Economy Commission and continues to promote the financial technology sector in the mainstream media. With a background in quantum physics, Gemma previously headed Investment Strategy for a publicly-listed wealth manager with £8 billion of assets.
      • Position: Founder and CEO, Moola

Joanne Hannaford:

      • Category: Technology Professionals
      • Bio: A Partner at Goldman Sachs since 2014, Jo leads projects involving thousands of engineers on a global scale, most recently overseeing the build-out of Marcus UK, the firm’s new consumer savings platform. Jo joined the firm in 1997 in the Investment Research Division and prior to this was responsible for Global Volume Trading Technology at NatWest Markets. In 2016, Jo was invited to act as an advisor to the UK Government Digital Service Advisory Board and more recently was appointed Chair of the Bank of England CIO Forum. She is the driving force behind Goldman Sachs’ partnerships with various diversity focused organisations, such as the Code First: Girls 2020 Campaign, which aims to teach 20,000 young women to code by 2020 for free. Through this partnership, she has also been able to offer all Goldman Sachs women analysts in London seats on free evening coding courses. Jo dedicates her time outside of work to similar causes, acting as a board member of Women in Science and Engineering (WISE), the leading organisation campaigning for gender balance in science, technology and engineering. She is also a trustee of the Bletchley Park Trust and sponsors their Disadvantaged Schools Education Programme.
      • Position: Head of Technology for EMEA and Global Head of Quality Assurance Engineering, Goldman Sachs

Juliette Souliman:

      • Category: Rising Stars
      • Bio: At 24, Juliette is the youngest investment professional at Octopus Ventures and the only woman in the FinTech investment team. She focuses exclusively on FinTech, InsurTech and Blockchain deals, identifying and assessing new seed, series A and growth deals in the UK for investments between £500,000 to £25 Million. Prior to joining Octopus, Juliette set up and scaled an endurance events marketplace company and worked in the Netherlands, the UK and France as a capital fundraiser in several early ventures in the Aerospace, SaaS and VR sectors. Juliette is a regular public speaker at FinTech events, sharing Octopus’ and sometimes her own perspective on the next emerging and exciting financial innovations. She is a big advocate for more diversity in FinTech and especially in FinTech funding. Juliette is a mentor at the London Business School and London & Partners, and is part of Octopus’ initiative working with the Department for International Trade on their newest women in FinTech programme. She is also an active member of the Women in VC community.
      • Position: FinTech VC Investor, Octopus Ventures

Lauren Capelin:

      • Category: Rising Stars
      • Bio: Lauren is a community strategist and disruptive innovation specialist, passionate about new business models, corporate social innovation, impact investment and fostering entrepreneurial capacity, particularly in women. As the first Head of Community at an Australian VC fund, Reinventure Group, Lauren focuses on strengthening portfolio collaboration, deepening connection with strategic investor Westpac, and building networks in the broader FinTech and start-up ecosystem, both in Australia and globally. She currently sits the board on Fintech Australia, which she played a role in establishing. As a leading woman in the industry, Lauren works hard to increase diversity in FinTech and venture capital through initiating and driving a number of industry collaborations, including a directory that profiles the women building FinTech startups in Australia, a 'Women in Venture' program for women university students to learn basic skills and understanding of venture capital and 'Get on Board', an event to increase the pipeline of women on startup boards. She also led a salary benchmarking collaboration with 8 local venture funds and an executive search firm to provide much-needed qualified data points on startup salaries in Australia.
      • Position: Head of Venture Community, Reinventure Group

Lois Ollerenshaw:

      • Category: Rising Stars
      • Bio: Lois was playing video games before she could walk and loves cool tech, so leading engagement with start-ups for NBS Ventures is a dream gig. She helped set up Nationwide's venture fund and define their approach to investing. She sources and analyses investments for Nationwide, and helps manage the portfolio. She’s passionate about how FinTech can tackle societal challenges. Lois is involved in initiatives to bolster women's participation in the FinTech sector, and volunteers with universities and charities to encourage young people from less privileged backgrounds to consider a career within it. Lois is a proponent of socially-conscious investing, and has spoken about Nationwide’s approach at FinTech North, the UK Finance Digital Innovation Summit, the Finance Innovation Lab’s ‘Women in Financial Innovation’ series, and at Slush in Helsinki.
      • Position: Venture Principal, Nationwide Building Society

Maria Gotsch:

      • Category: Investors
      • Bio: Maria heads up the investment arm of the Partnership for New York City, which invests in local ventures to create jobs and grow the Big Apple’s economy. Back in 2009/2010, she was instrumental in creating and launching the FinTech Innovation Lab with partner Accenture, which was the first accelerator program to have corporations as explicit partners. The programme operates in London and Hong Kong, and was the model for the FinTech Hive in Dubai. Despite being the world’s financial capital and home to an otherwise robust technology sector, New York had yet to become a major player on the FinTech scene. The Fintech Innovation Lab has been a key factor in the growth of NYC's FinTech sector. Initially the programme was supported by 10 banks and now there are 44 of some of the largest banks & financial institutions. Maria has spearheaded the creation and operation of the Transit Tech Lab; New York Digital Health Accelerator; NY Fashion Tech Lab; seed financing for IT/digital media companies, proof-of-concept funding for university-based biomedical research, low cost loans for mid-size arts groups and ReStart Central and Financial Recovery Fund (assistance and funding for small businesses impacted by 9/11).
      • Position: President & CEO, Partnership Fund for NYC/FinTech Innovation Lab

Maxine Austin:

      • Category: Professional & Financial Services
      • Bio: Maxine role is part of the growth and investment into enterprise enablers to evolve Lloyds Banking Group’s app, web and API platforms. Her team are supporting the growth of beta app capabilities and leading the product management community in Transformation to embed a product-led culture. Previously, Maxine was a founding member of the LBG Innovation Labs. She successfully franchised key initiatives to enable innovation at scale across the Group and launched a FinTech mentoring scheme matching senior executive mentors to early stage startups. Passionate about inclusion and diversity, Maxine co-led the digital stream of the Lloyds’ Breakthrough women’s network, delivering collaboration events with FinTech partners to champion the agenda for diversity in senior roles across the technology and financial services industries. She created a ‘Deciphering Digital’ campaign across this network and led a ‘Scaling for Inclusion’ workshop at the FinTech Growth Forum, an industry event for startups. Maxine has seized the opportunity to undertake roles that shape the future of banking, spanning Wealth Management, Learning, Talent, Innovation and Digital Platforms. Her career journey so far showcases the many routes into finance and technology; and that equipped with a growth mindset, you can explore, succeed and have impact within an organisation.
      • Position: Senior Product Manager, Digital Platforms, Group Transformation, Lloyds Banking Group

Melike Belli:

      • Category: Rising Stars
      • Bio: Melike is Market Development Manager at Cybertonica, a London-based FinTech startup using AI and machine learning to manage risk and increase conversion for all channels of transaction platforms. Along with her colleagues, she is working tirelessly to protect e-businesses and their customers from fraudsters. Melike also regularly runs thought leadership events in London on hot topics in FinTech, AI and fraud prevention to facilitate learning, collaboration and business networking between industry professionals. A Chartered Banker by training, she specialises in the UK and Turkey FinTech ecosystems and has authored numerous publications. Published in 2016, Melike's book ‘Banking and FinTech’ started the FinTech movement in Turkey. It put FinTech firmly on the agenda of the country’s top decision makers in payments and banking and was used as a road-map to build a FinTech ecosystem. Melike recently joined the Advisory Board of Nottingham University Business School, where she aims to contribute to the vision of the School in creating education programmes fostering financial innovation and development of talent for the FinTech industry. She is passionate about diversity and inclusion in financial services and Country Ambassador for the European Women in Payments Network, a platform that inspires, empowers and mentors women.
      • Position: Market Development Manager, Cybertonica

Meri Williams:

      • Category: Technology Professionals
      • Bio: Meri is CTO at Monzo, a bank that lives in your phone. Their mission is to make money work for everyone: making you effortlessly financially savvy with smart features, unexpectedly friendly service and a relentless focus on what people genuinely want and need. The engineering team at Monzo has doubled in size from 50 to 130+ in under 6 months, building new features and running a robust and resilient platform for over 1.5 million people. They recently built in-app crowdfunding capability successfully used to raise £20mil from 36,006 investors in just over 2 days; £18mil of which happened in just 2 hours and 45 mins! Meri’s career has spanned development, agile and product management, mostly in engineering leadership roles. She’s led teams ranging from 30 to 300 at places like Procter & Gamble, the Government Digital Service and a range of startups. She is a published author, international speaker, Chair of @TheLeadDev conference, and Tech Advisor for Kindred VC. She also holds board trustee roles at Stonewall (the UK’s leading LGBT+ rights charity) and One Goes Up (a micro-charity focused on helping young women in South Africa start STEM careers), as well as sponsoring Women in Technology scholarships at the University of Bath.
      • Position: CTO, Monzo

Nim Haas:

      • Category: Marketers & Communicators
      • Bio: Nim heads global marketing for Global Processing Services (GPS), the issuer processor powering the payment technology behind some of the most disruptive FinTechs out there such as Revolut and Starling Bank. In less than a year she has raised the brand reputation of the company, achieved 167 pieces of articles in the press, and put the GPS brand in front of over 324 million readers. She has spent the last 4 years working in Tech PR, managing the communication and brand reputation for FinTechs, and also provided pro-bono PR and communication services to UKESF- a charity focused on supporting STEM in the UK and to Mass challenge. She tries to make that bridge between the traditional 'boys club' payment sector and that of tech and FinTech. She is a member of London Tech Advocates, Women in Tech, Ada's Group and sits on the Public Affairs Committee at the Prepaid International Forum. Nim co-founded and launched the first e-loan aggregator platform in France in 1998 and that's where her love for technology and FinTech started. The platform generated a minimum of 40,000 loan requests in its first year and had partnerships with over 10 major banks and financial loan institutions.
      • Position: Head of Marketing, Global Processing Services

Poojya Manjunath:

      • Category: Professional and Financial Services
      • Bio: Poojya Manjunath joined Lloyds Banking Group in 2010 and has held a number of diverse roles across technology, culture, digital transformation and product innovation. Currently Poojya is Machine Learning Product Manager, building AI-based products that deliver great customer and colleague capability – as part of Lloyds Banking Group’s commitment to Helping Britain Prosper. A TechWomen100 Award winner, Poojya is also the first person from Lloyds Banking Group to ever be shortlisted for an Asian Businesswoman of the Year Award owing to her contribution and achievements within the Group. An Ambassador to the Women of the Future network, Poojya drives forward the UK female talent agenda through championing and mentoring females in STEM both inside and outside her organisation. In 2018, Poojya was identified as a Lloyds Banking Group inspirational BAME senior leader and role model in the Group’s annual Inspire List. Poojya’s plans for the future are to continue creating customer, colleague and technology centric propositions through innovation. Passionate about creating a great culture where everyone can thrive, Poojya’s vision is to transform Lloyds Banking Group into an exemplary workplace of the future, grow the Group’s digital technology and data into a world class capability, and transform the way Britain banks.
      • Position: Machine Learning Product Manger, Lloyds Banking Group

Rosita Namji:

      • Category: Policy Makers & Regulatory Experts
      • Bio: Rosita is passionate about leveraging FinTech to advance access and usage of financial services for those living under $2/day, and has advised and led collaborations with governments, the private sector, civil society, and multilateral organisations and bodies, including the G7 and G20. At the foundation, she leads a $9M p.a. portfolio of FinTech related investments, including women’s financial inclusion advocacy and digital financial services and taxation policy. She was a founding funder and served as the chair of steering committee of the RegTech for Regulators Accelerator (R2A) program, which pairs financial regulators with global FinTech entrepreneurs to develop solutions for financial supervision. Rosita serves on the executive committee of the Better than Cash Alliance – a UN-based consortium of governments, companies, and international organisations that accelerates the transition from cash to digital payments to reduce poverty and drive inclusive growth. She also helped create and serves as an advisor to FinEquity, a women’s financial inclusion community of practice hosted by CGAP at the World Bank. FinEquity comprises of a network of researchers, public, private, and nonprofit organisations and coordinates efforts to increase funding effectiveness, creates intellectual capital, and spurs innovation in women’s economic empowerment across nearly 60 countries and 350 organisations.
      • Position: Senior Program Officer, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Sarah Rench:

      • Category: Technology Professionals
      • Bio: Sarah is one of the youngest technical Senior Managers in Data and Analytics at EY and recently won their International Women’s Day 2019 Award for being a ‘change maker’ and role model to others. She is leading and driving transformation in traditional consulting and financial organisations, banks, asset managers and insurance companies by developing new AI products to solve business problems like data quality and governance using advanced analytics and machine learning. Sarah is an advisor for the All-Party Parliament Group on AI, where MPs, AI leaders, businesses and universities discuss the impact of AI on the UK workforce and actions that should be taken and she helped support the creation of the AI Centre of Enablement at EY. She is helping change the stereotypes of FinTechs and AI organisations from being male-dominated and actively encourages women and other minority groups to get into STEM, FinTech and Consulting by her work on the boards of DevelopHer, Cass Global Women's Leaders Programme and EY Women in Tech. Sarah provides Technical Bootcamps which help train people to code and has spoken at various events to help train over 2,000 people on Data, AI and Ethics in 2018 and she is also a LGBTQIA+ champion.
      • Position: Senior Manager in Advanced Analytics, Robotics and AI, EY

Shruti Ajitsaria:

      • Category: Professional & Financial Services
      • Bio: Shruti started Fuse - Allen & Overy’s tech innovation space - to identify LegalTech, RegTech and DealTech companies to foster cooperation between lawyers and clients. This has had a profound impact on the sector and is enabling lawyers to touch and feel technologies which would otherwise remain alien to them. Shruti used her most recent maternity leave to undertake the FT Diploma in Non-Executive Directorships and a 3 month course for entrepreneurs at Google Campus, as well as being selected to partake in the Judicial Support Scheme (aimed at increasing diversity in the judiciary). She is a governor at the Haberdashers' Aske's Schools in Elstree, a member of the Fundraising Committee of Noah's Ark Hospice and a TEDx speaker. She also manages a sector-agnostic portfolio of private investments and is currently on BBC 2’s Million Pound Menu as a restaurant investor.
      • Position: Head of Fuse, Allen & Overy

Sophie Guibaud:

      • Category: Senior Leaders
      • Bio: Sophie started her career in investment banking in New York before joining a Growth Capital fund in Paris. She subsequently moved to London to be more deeply involved in start-up operations and was instrumental in the launch of HelloFresh UK, a Rocket Internet backed e-commerce company. She previously headed product strategy at Bankable and joined Fidor in 2015, where she has created a strong visibility in the UK market and made partnerships with established FinTech companies such as Seedrs and Nutmeg. In 2017, she moved to Fidor Solutions and is now helping banks and non-banks with large audiences launch new digital banking propositions across Europe. Sophie is an active mentor, advising startups at London’s UCL university, L39 and StartupBootcamp, as well as individuals. She is also an advisor of the You Technology Group, a FX-focused prepaid proposition based in Hong Kong and Astorya VC, an early stage venture capital firm focused on insurance innovation.
      • Position: Managing Director, Europe, Fidor

Sophie Theen:

      • Category: Technology Professionals
      • Bio: A reformed engineer, Sophie's expertise is now focused on reinventing the importance of talent management in the People function within a conservative industry like financial services and she is passionate to establish a blueprint for the working culture of the future. She introduced Social Hiring as a people strategy into 11:FS with a view to increase candidate experience and employee engagement levels. As a mental health first aider, Sophie has created a support system to combat depression, anxiety and other factors specifically affecting rapid growth businesses in the FinTech community. Pre 11:FS, she’s led recruitment projects with Ford, General Motors and IBM, before shifting her passion and focus to setting up the future of HR in startups. She is a regular mentor and career coach in the startup community. A prolific writer on Diversity, Sophie also runs an HR community in Slack, Work Experience Programs for young women and is a moderator for the Tech Talent Charter group. Outside of work, she mentors Talent professionals who are in a similar environment/standalone HR and joined Tech Nation as an industry advisor to mentor aspiring CEOs and CoFounders of FinTech startups in London.
      • Position: Head of HR and Talent, 11FS

Stacey Winter:

      • Category: Technology Professionals
      • Bio: Using her FinTech experience, psychology studies and passion for inclusive leadership, Stacey has delivered the technology for some of the largest outsourcing deals over the past decade. She has a proven track-record of managing large groups of people from different cultural backgrounds through transformation. Most recently, Stacey has designed and is implementing a technology organisation transformation at State Street in EMEA to align with future FinTech-branding, a diverse workforce strategy and European business strategies. A visible and approachable ambassador for inclusion and diversity programmes, Stacey has partnered with local apprenticeship schemes and a range of universities, whilst designing and heading key operational business-to-IT interaction models at several of the largest financial services outsource providers.
      • Position: EMEA IT Chief Administration Officer, State Street

Sybille Mueller:

      • Category: Marketers & Communicators
      • Bio: A founding member of Streets Consulting, Sybille cares deeply about work ethics and standards in the delivery of all aspects of a communications campaign. She oversees many of the business development, marketing and communications campaigns for both global trading powerhouses and entrepreneurial FinTech and RegTech firms, helping them grow and build their profile in the marketplace, the media and amongst their peers. She both advises on and drives integrated marketing and communications campaigns for clients, helps them frame clear and consistent messages, to ensure their views on industry themes are heard, understood and requested. Success looks different for all clients, stretching beyond the important metrics of corporate growth to receiving industry awards, becoming sought-after media commentators, or being invited to speak at industry events. Sybille cares deeply about rigour and respect in all business and media relationships, values that shine through in all client engagement, across the company. This is one of the reasons why, time and again, clients place their trust in the Streets Consulting team to help them achieve their growth ambitions. Sybille is a driving force in forging partnerships with fintech-minded organisations such as Innovate Finance, Accenture’s Fintech Lab, The FCA and the Investment Association.
      • Position: Director, Streets Consulting

Teana Baker-Taylor:

      • Category: Policy Makers & Regulatory Experts
      • Bio: Teana has leveraged over 20 years experience within both the traditional finance and crypto industries to bridge two ecosystems with shared commercial, regulatory and reputational challenges. As the Executive Director for GDF, she advocates for global crypto-asset standards and best practices for market participants through the ongoing development of the global GDF Code of Conduct, and has helped to build a community of 300+ of the most influential digital currency and token companies, as well as academics and professional services who support the industry. Teana contributes to policymaker, regulator and industry outreach to build a shared understanding of the risks and opportunities presented by tokens and crypto-assets. This activity has led to building and enhancing GDF's relationships and influence with local and global policy makers and directly affected policy to date. Prior to her current role, Teana held senior positions at Coinfloor, HSBC, Citi, Fiserv, Royal Bank of Scotland and Hilton Hotels. Teana championed the launch of the HSBC Innovation Lab implemented in partnership with Singapore’s regulator MAS and executed HSBC's WEF Davos content and marketing strategy.
      • Position: Executive Director, Global Digital Finance

Valentina Kristensen:

      • Category: Marketers & Communicators
      • Bio: Valentina was OakNorth’s first marketing communications hire and has been working directly with its co-founders, Rishi Khosla and Joel Perlman, since June 2015 before its launch through to its current position as a global FinTech business with a $2.8bn valuation. She is a passionate advocate for improving the female talent pipeline and closing the gender pay gap in financial services, sitting on the Steering Committee for FinTECHTalents, which is working to address this. She regularly appears on Fintech Insider – the number one business podcast for FinTech innovators and influencers – and speaks at various FinTech events throughout the year, including: Finovate, Money 20/20, and Fintech Connect Live. Last year, she participated in the Money 20/20 Europe Payments Race where she travelled from Istanbul to Amsterdam using only wearable payments technology – no cash or cards. She recently joined Tech London Advocates’ Fintech Working Group leadership team which aims to work with other organisations to strengthen the UK’s FinTech ecosystem, and is currently completing an eight-week coding course with Code First: Girls.
      • Position: Director, Growth and Communications, OakNorth

Vica Manos:

      • Category: Investors
      • Bio: A founding member of Anthemis Group, Vica is passionate about catalysing change in financial services. She co-heads Investment Partnerships and runs the Group’s Financial Wellness vehicle (Anthemis Exponential Ventures), investing in early stage FinTech, InsurTech and HealthTech. Vica has built an investment thesis and resulting portfolio of early-stage companies that successfully address Financial Wellness holistically, leveraging advanced data science and AI, and leaning on behavioural science. It is her mission to continue to develop this thesis, invest in and support companies that are truly user-centric and shape the financial services landscape in a positive, sustainable manner. Prior to joining Anthemis, Vica was an investment banker at Credit Suisse. She focused on leveraged finance and subsequently portfolio management, where she ran a $1.5bn debt portfolio with a focus on the media and infrastructure sectors.
      • Position: Managing Director, Anthemis

Viola Llewellyn:

      • Category: Senior Leaders
      • Bio: Viola’s passion for financial inclusion led her to co-found Ovamba, a US-based FinTech company that supports merchant businesses & manufacturers in Africa and emerging markets through a mobile platform. Ovamba’s platform has opened Africa's market up to international investors from Asia especially, using trade innovation to create 450% growth amongst businesses in the Central African region. She is an active advisor, sitting on the boards of the Women Economic Imperative, African Women’s Payment Network and the European Women in Payments Network. She joined the alternative finance sector in 2013, when there were only a handful of women in the industry, and even fewer black women. Viola is a global tech Ambassador to the World Economic Forum and partnered with Microsoft to build one of the first natural language chatbots for the African Market. She was listed by Digital Undivided’s 2016 report as one of only 34 Black women in the USA to have raised more than $1m for tech companies.
      • Position: Co-Founder and President, Ovamba Solutions
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