Part of the Paris Fintech Forum Communities program for 2021, this podcast focus on Fintech founding myths from the pioneering innovators, entrepreneurs and investors who turned their disruptive visions into reality. Hosted by broadcaster Elliott Gotkine the F in Tech podcast lifts the lid on fintech founders whose journeys of genius - and despair - are changing our lives, mostly for the better. The F in Tech podcast is co-produced in 2021 by the Paris Fintech Forum with the support of bpifrance
Credit Kudos CEO, Freddy Kelly [PFF2021/38]
33:13When he got his first taste of startup life, in San Francisco, freshly-graduated Freddy Kelly did a few months at culinary school on the side. Little did he know that years later, his baking skills would help him blag his way into a conference by virtue of a chocolate cake he’d baked. He met Credit Kudos’s first investor there, and his fintech - an open banking credit-reference company - was off to the races. It hasn’t stopped running since.
Bridge by Bankin' CEO, Joan Burkovic [PFF2021/37]
33:21In its early days, banks tried to block Bankin’. Some set up call centres, warning customers of the danger of using the personal finance app, and encouraging them not to use it. On one occasion, they even called Joan, not realising that he was the fintech’s co-founder. Nowadays, with open banking, it’s a different story; banks, for the most part, are cooperative. And Bankin’ is now blossoming into one of Europe’s leading consumer finance apps - with a potential B2B spinoff to boot.
Elinvar CEO, Chris Bartz [PFF2021/33]
28:55Blurb: How having investors from day one helped wealth management platform, Elinvar, get off to a flying start, and why co-founder and CEO, Chris Bartz, says that doesn’t mean there was any less pressure. Fun fact: “elinvar” is an alloy of iron, nickel, chromium, and other constituents, resistant to rust and magnetization and having a low rate of thermal expansion.
Bitbond CEO, Albrecht Radoslav [PFF2021/32]
35:34Aged 14, Radko Albrecht, was one of Germany’s top figure skaters. A child of Slovakian refugees, he was on track to become an Olympian, something that would have required focus, dedication and the ability to pick yourself up when you’re down. He never made it to the Olympics, but those same skills have come in handy with his chosen path: founding BitBond, which helps banks and intermediaries issue and securitize bonds using blockchain technology and tokenization.
iwoca Co-founder & CEO, Christoph Rieche [PFF2021/31]
33:20When Christoph Rieche told colleagues at Goldman Sachs he was leaving to set up iWoca, some of them thought he was crazy. Others were jealous. Ten years later, the second group would appear to have been right: iwoca has now helped more than 65,000 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) gain access to capital. It’s building out new products all the time, raising $350m in debt and equity capital along the way. And although Christoph’s creative talents may not have come up to snuff for him to have become an architect, the businesses iwoca has helped people to build may end up having an even bigger impact than any structure he may have designed.
Divido CEO, Christer Holloman [2021/30]
40:22The buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) space is on fire right now - just look at Klarna’s latest funding round, valuing the fintech in excess of $45b, or the $29b Square paid for Afterpay. So it seems as good a time as any to catch up with Christer Holloman, founder of Divido, which connects banks to retailers, to offer customers BNPL. His other big passion is promoting diversity in fintech through his charitable initiative, Fintech Finishers. “I’m raised by a single mother in northern Sweden [and gay],” he says. “So for me, gender diversity and equality has been a given from day one. And then when I came to the UK, started my company and just sort of being busy building the company, I didn’t really think much about it. And then, one day, I took a good, hard look at my leadership team, and two middle-aged, white, straight men were looking back at me, and I realised: ‘hang on a second, where did I go wrong a long the way here’.”