Wharton FinTech Podcast

Wharton Fintech Podcast

Connecting you with the people, companies, and ideas revolutionizing global financial services. Our guests are the leading fintech founders, investors, and thinkers in the world. Subscribe and follow us for more FinTech content by searching @whartonfintech on your preferred platform! read less
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Episodes

Mesh Payments Founder & CEO Oded Zehavi - Automating Travel and Expense Management
04-06-2024
Mesh Payments Founder & CEO Oded Zehavi - Automating Travel and Expense Management
Joshua Benadiva hosts Oded Zehavi, co-founder of Mesh Payments, whose innovative approach to expense management is reshaping how companies handle their finances globally. In this episode, they discuss: - Oded's rich background with giants like PayPal and Payoneer and how it paved the way for founding Mesh Payments. - The intricate challenges of launching fintech solutions in international markets and the strategies to overcome them. - How Mesh Payments is revolutionizing cross-border B2B transactions through the use of card networks. - The pivot of Mesh Payments during the COVID-19 pandemic to address the evolving needs of remote and distributed teams. - The transformation from a payment-centric to an automation-centric company, enhancing the operations of the office of the CFO. About Mesh Payments: Mesh Payments enables robust automation and management for any spend category from procurement to T&E via a single platform and is built from the ground up for a modern work environment. Mesh makes it easy to manage and control global spending across multiple entities and currencies, from saving on FX with local currency cards to customizing policies, approvals, automations and integrations. Today, more than 1,500 companies rely on Mesh to power global spend, automate manual accounting tasks, and optimize finance workflows. About Oded Zahavi: With a career that spans across major players like PayPal and Payoneer, Oded Zahavi brings a wealth of experience to the fintech industry. His journey from these companies to founding Mesh Payments showcases his deep understanding of financial technologies and market strategies. His insights are particularly keen on scaling operations internationally and navigating the complex global compliance landscape. For more FinTech insights, follow us on: WFT Medium: medium.com/wharton-fintech WFT Twitter: twitter.com/whartonfintech WFT Instagram: instagram.com/whartonfintech Joshua’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jbenadiva/
Plaid COO Eric Sager – On Fintech Innovations at Plaid and Beyond
22-04-2024
Plaid COO Eric Sager – On Fintech Innovations at Plaid and Beyond
Nate Gee hosts Eric Sager, COO of Plaid, whose technology links fintech apps and financial institutions in a network empowering the fintech solutions that millions of people use. In this episode, they discuss: - How Plaid has transformed the fintech landscape in the past decade - Eric’s journey into fintech and becoming Plaid’s COO - The role of APIs and open banking in modern financial services - The growth of digital finance in recent years - Instant payments and alternative payment rails - Other fintech trends and how Plaid fits in - And much more! About Plaid Founded in 2013, Plaid has become essential infrastructure in the fintech world, connecting over 100 million users to financial services and facilitating integration among more than 12,000 financial institutions and 8,000 fintech apps worldwide. Plaid’s technology enables simpler, faster, and more transparent financial services, making it a cornerstone in the ongoing evolution of digital finance. About Eric Sager With over 20 years of experience in financial services, Eric Sager joined Plaid as COO in 2019. Before joining Plaid, Eric held senior roles at BlueVine and Square. Originally from Germany, Eric worked at Bain & Company in Europe after graduating from Harvard Business School in 2006. For more FinTech insights, follow us on: WFT Medium: medium.com/wharton-fintech WFT Twitter: twitter.com/whartonfintech WFT Instagram: instagram.com/whartonfintech Nate’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nathan-c-gee/
Spade, Co-Founder & Head of Operations Tess Bloch: Pioneering the Future of Merchant Intelligence
29-02-2024
Spade, Co-Founder & Head of Operations Tess Bloch: Pioneering the Future of Merchant Intelligence
Rhea Advani Bobba hosts Tess Bloch, co-founder and Head of Operations of Spade, a fintech startup reshaping the card ecosystem with real-time merchant intelligence. They delve into how Spade is revolutionizing transaction data clarity, enabling FIs to enhance fraud detection, authorize more transactions, and foster innovation in financial products and services. They discuss the journey of Spade from its inception and path to product-market fit. The conversation also covers the challenges and successes faced in expanding globally, the importance of a clear ROI for financial institutions, and Spade's ambitious plans for the future. About Tess Tess Bloch is the co-founder and Head of Operations of Spade. In her current role as Head of Operations, Tess leads Spade’s operations, finance, sales, and people teams, and grew the employee headcount 5x. Before co-founding Spade, Tess spent two years at the leading income and employment connectivity API, Pinwheel, where she started as the Chief of Staff before becoming its Head of Operations. In these roles, she helped scale the Pinwheel team 14 to 100 employees and supported growth that helped the company raise a $50M Series B. Previously, Tess also worked for McKinsey & Company in London, where she focused on payments, private equity, and public and social sector work, but her passion for fintech didn’t start there. Already, before graduating from Stanford, she realized her interest in the financial services ecosystem early on in her career, starting an internship at Venmo in her freshman year and taking time off during her junior year to work there full time. About Spade Spade provides real-time merchant intelligence for the card ecosystem. Spade leverages its ground truth database to link any card transaction to a real merchant identity – providing granular merchant, category, and geolocation information. Spade leads the market in terms of merchant coverage, geolocation matching accuracy, and speed of transaction enrichment. Customers such as Mercury, Sardine, Ramp, and Unit trust Spade's data to authorize more transactions, prevent fraud, and build more innovative features. — As always, for more Fintech insights and opportunities to collaborate, please find us below: WFT LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/wharton-fintech-club/ WFT Twitter: twitter.com/whartonfintech WFT Blog: medium.com/wharton-fintech WFT Home: www.whartonfintech.org Rhea’s Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/rheaa/
Nik Milanovic & Rex Salisbury - From Fintech Builder to Solo GP
16-02-2024
Nik Milanovic & Rex Salisbury - From Fintech Builder to Solo GP
Zoey Tang and Rocky Gowni sat down with Rex Salisbury and Nik Milanovic. In today’s episode, we discussed -Latest updates from This Week in Fintech and Cambrian -Nik and Rex’s experiences as solo GP -Their perspectives of the latest fintech ecosystem and what to look forward to in 2024 About Nik Milanovic & This Week in Fintech Nik is the founder of This Week in Fintech. He has been a key organizer in building the fintech community, bringing together fintech enthusiasts all over the world. Last year, he also started the Fintech Fund as the solo GP. About Rex Salisbury and Cambrian Rex is the Founder & Solo GP @ Cambrian VC. He started Cambrian previously in 2016 to cultivate a community focused on founders and builders in fintech. His community building had accidentally led him into the world of venture, as he ultimately became a founding member of a16z’s fintech practice, investing in companies such as Tally, Deel, and Oyster Technology. For more FinTech insights, follow us on: WFT Medium: medium.com/wharton-fintech WFT Twitter: twitter.com/whartonfintech WFT Instagram: instagram.com/whartonfintech Zoey's LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/zoeytang1007/ Previous episodes with Nik & Rex: -https://medium.com/wharton-fintech/nik-milanovi%C4%87-founder-of-this-week-in-fintech-and-general-partner-of-the-fintech-fund-on-9023790f242c -https://medium.com/wharton-fintech/podcast-with-rex-salisbury-founder-of-fintech-devs-and-pms-e40869eb4de1
Pagaya CEO Gal Krubiner – Transforming consumer lending with AI
08-02-2024
Pagaya CEO Gal Krubiner – Transforming consumer lending with AI
Nate Gee hosts Gal Krubiner, Co-founder and CEO of Pagaya, whose AI-driven network of investors, lenders, and borrowers aims to reshape the credit underwriting process and extend financial opportunity to more consumers. In this episode, they cover: - Gal’s motivation for founding Pagaya - How qualified loan applicants can be left behind in traditional credit underwriting - Pagaya’s AI-driven lender network and how it works - The future of AI in financial services - Pagaya’s IPO in 2021 - And much more! About Pagaya Technologies Pagaya was founded in 2016 with a goal to promote financial inclusion through improved credit underwriting and evaluation. It aims to build the leading AI network to enable better outcomes and create new credit opportunities for financial services providers and their customers. The company became publicly listed in 2021 (NASDAQ: PGY). About Gal Krubiner Gal Krubiner has served as Pagaya’s Chief Executive Officer since he co-founded the company in 2016. Prior to co-founding Pagaya, Gal focused on structuring and distributing sophisticated credit and asset-backed securities products at UBS AG. He’s also held other roles in investments, entrepreneurship, and financial markets. Gal graduated from Tel Aviv University in 2012. For more FinTech insights, follow us on: WFT Medium: medium.com/wharton-fintech WFT Twitter: twitter.com/whartonfintech WFT Instagram: instagram.com/whartonfintech Nate’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nathan-c-gee/
Dan Kimerling - Founder & Managing Partner of Deciens - Insights From The Most Honest Man In Fintech
06-02-2024
Dan Kimerling - Founder & Managing Partner of Deciens - Insights From The Most Honest Man In Fintech
In today’s episode, Joshua Benadiva hosts Dan Kimerling, founder and Managing Partner of Deciens, a leading early-stage fintech venture capital firm. Dan shares insights into the fintech industry, emphasizing the importance of timing in entrepreneurship and the need for businesses to have increasing returns and moats as they scale. In this episode you will hear about: - Dan's journey in the fintech industry and the founding and selling of Standard Treasury - The challenges and opportunities within the fintech space - The role of coaching in venture capital and the importance of customer satisfaction in the banking industry About Dan Kimerling: Dan Kimerling is deeply committed to investing in transformative companies at their inception, holding board positions in several Deciens portfolio companies like Chipper, Therma, and Treasury Prime. Before Deciens, he co-founded and led Standard Treasury to its acquisition by Silicon Valley Bank, establishing leading API solutions for the financial services industry. Standard Treasury garnered recognition from American Banker and SWIFT for its innovation. Post-acquisition, Dan headed API Banking and Open Platform at SVB. His early career included a stint at TechCrunch and an educational journey at the University of Chicago, where he achieved honors and won prestigious awards. Dan is recognized by Forbes’ "30 under 30," is a Kauffman Fellow, and actively contributes to the University of Chicago's Polsky Council and the Young Presidents’ Organization. He enjoys a personal life filled with reading, cooking, biking, and skiing in Chicago and Albuquerque. About Deciens: Founded in 2017 by Dan Kimerling, Deciens Capital is a venture capital firm dedicated to ushering in the next generation of financial services. By focusing exclusively on early-stage investments, Deciens aims to support foundational companies reshaping industries and regions, including significant collaborations with Chipper Cash, Treasury Prime, and Therma. The firm prides itself on being the initial significant investment for companies poised for substantial growth, deep market impact, and the establishment of strong competitive moats in sizable markets. Deciens' portfolio showcases a commitment to groundbreaking fintech ventures such as Treasury Prime, Chipper Cash, and several others, emphasizing its role in the digital transformation of traditional financial institutions. For more FinTech insights, follow us on WFT Medium: medium.com/wharton-fintech WFT Twitter: twitter.com/whartonfintech WFT Instagram: instagram.com/whartonfintech Josh's Twitter: @josh_benadiva Josh’s LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/jbenadiva/
Wemimo Abbey & Samir Goel, Esusu - Expanding access to credit using on-time rental payments
22-01-2024
Wemimo Abbey & Samir Goel, Esusu - Expanding access to credit using on-time rental payments
Russell Matambo hosts Wemimo Abbey and Samir Goel, co-CEOs and co-founders of Esusu, a leading Fintech platform that reports on-time rental payments to credit bureaus so renters can build credit while building owners and property managers maximise their portfolio health. They discuss how Esusu is expanding financial access in the US, Esusu’s growing pains and lessons learnt along the way, Samir and Wemimo’s principled and purposeful leadership as Co-CEOs, and much more! About Wemimo and Samir: Wemimo Abbey and Samir Goel are co-CEOs and co-founders of Esusu. Esusu is the leading Fintech platform providing rent reporting, property management analytics, and rental assistance to unlock financial access and stability for renters and property owners in the US. In 2023 alone, Esusu unlocked $21.9 Billion in new credit activity for Esusu renters, by enabling 107,000 renters establish credit score for the first time while helping many more with existing credit scores increase theirs by at least 36 points. Most recently, Esusu was valued at $1 billion in their $130 million Series B round. Prior to Esusu, both Samir and Wemimo founded social enterprises and had successful corporate careers. Samir Co-Founded Transfernation, a nationally recognized non-profit that used technology to direct over 5 million pounds of excess food to nearly 2.5 million people in underserved communities across New York City. Wemimo on the other hand founded Clean Water for Everyone, a global social venture providing affordable access to clean water for 250,000+ people in six countries. He also founded a data analytics company gathering data on NGOs operating in Africa, which was acquired in 2014. Collectively Wemimo and Samir have been featured in over a dozen major business publications including but not limited to the 2020 Forbes 30 Under 30, the 2022 Fortune 40 Under 40 and the 2023 TIME 100 lists. -- As always, for more Fintech insights and opportunities to collaborate, please find us below: WFT LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/wharton-fintech-club/ WFT Twitter: twitter.com/whartonfintech WFT Blog: medium.com/wharton-fintech WFT Home: www.whartonfintech.org Russell's LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/russell-matambo-cfa-a5900039/