Overall Rank: 4
Category: Banking Solutions
Category Rank: 1
- Top Fintech Company of 2023
- Top Fintech Company of 2022
At Finastra their purpose is to unlock the power of finance for everyone & redefine finance for good. They’re the orchestrator of open finance; building and delivering innovative, next-generation technology on their open Fusion software architecture and cloud ecosystem. They’re one of the world’s largest FinTechs, working with over 9,000 customers including 90 of the top 100 banks globally.
This provides a platform to the open finance economy. Finastra’s open developer platform and app marketplace unlocks innovation in financial services
Accelerate innovation for customers. This allows access to new innovations created by the wider financial ecosystem with ready-built apps connected to Finastra products
Their platform enables cutomers to innovate quickly and at low cost by unlocking Finastra’s proven banking software
Simon Paris, Chief Executive Officer
Simon takes responsibility for Finastra’s strategic direction and growth. His leadership steers the company as it becomes the world’s leading ecosystem orchestrator for providers and consumers of financial services everywhere. With this clear strategic intent, he champions the company’s core technology solutions and open development platform in accelerating collaboration and innovation, to unlock the potential of people, businesses and communities.
A firm believer in the principles of doing well by doing good, Simon chairs the World Trade Board and is passionate about how technology and open trade can drive financial inclusion and improve people’s lives. He also serves on the Board of Directors for Everbridge, a critical event management (CEM) software company, and on the Board of Directors for Thomson Reuters.
An inspiring and trusted fintech thought leader, Simon speaks regularly at large-scale events including the annual World Trade Symposium, Paris FinTech Forum and The Milken Asia Summit. He is a strong advocate for diversity and inclusion, with refreshing and candid views on equality in the workplace. Featuring in Bank Innovation’s ‘Innovators to Watch’ list back in 2018, Simon has since been named a top 50 financial technology CEO by The Financial Technology Report two years running, as well as a top 20 CEO in Europe by the Software Report. He was also recognized in the CEO Today Awards 2021.
Simon joined Finastra (formerly Misys) as President in 2015, was appointed Deputy Chief Executive Officer in 2017 and became Chief Executive Officer in June 2018. He brings more than 25 years of sales, management and global leadership expertise to the company, having previously held the role of President, Industry Cloud, at SAP. Prior to that he was a senior consultant with McKinsey & Company.
He holds a Masters degree in Business Administration (MBA) from the INSEAD Business School in France and a Bachelor’s degree in Business & European languages from the European Business School.
Neil Blagden, Chief Operating Officer
Neil controls Finastra’s operational strategy and transformation, including support, success, experience, global services, managed services, automation, and IT, as well as overseeing the company’s Cornerstone Businesses – Student Lending, Cheques and Sustained Enterprise Solutions.
He takes a relentless approach to creating a customer-first culture, leveraging technologies such as AI and data to drive greater insight for businesses, and translating the learnings into compelling and meaningful customer experiences. Having spent over 20 years in customer-centric leadership roles, he combines a genuine passion for better customer outcomes with a pragmatic approach to functional alignment across a business to deliver success.
Prior to joining Finastra, initially as Chief Customer Officer, Neil spent several years at Vodafone, where he was responsible for the company’s Digital, Consumer & Enterprise Care, billing & collections, transformation function and overall customer experience for 24 million UK customers across mobile, broadband and IoT services. Previous roles included Director of Customer Experience & Conduct at Direct Line, and consultancy positions at PwC, EY and Accenture. He holds a BSc in Geography and Economics from Loughborough University.
Helen Cook, Chief People Officer, Finastra
Helen takes global responsibility for the people and organization as well as advancing Finastra’s aspiration to be the most inclusive and diverse employer in the fintech industry. She is particularly passionate about building a curious and well-tooled workforce, supporting employees to develop skills which keep them relevant, engaged and growing. Developing the company’s global talent and ensuring a truly inclusive workplace is her priority.
Helen was previously at Natwest Group, where she was a member of the Executive Team and held the position of Chief Human Resources Officer. She has an incredible wealth of expertise including extensive global exposure in all aspects of people strategy. Her career spans more than 25 years in financial services, including experience at Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley.
Helen graduated from Cambridge University and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel. In addition to her role at Finastra, she has served on the Board of the Financial Services Skills Committee and on the Advisory Board of Ivy House. She also serves as a mentor for the FTSE 100 Mentoring Foundation.
Carissa Kell, Chief Financial Officer
Carissa is the Chief Financial Officer for Finastra and is responsible for leading the Finastra global finance organization and key supporting functions, including Financial Planning and Analysis, Treasury, Accounting, Tax, Investor Relations, Finance Transformation and Procurement, as well as Sales Operations. Carissa joined Finastra as Senior Vice President, Head of Finance in July 2020. She brings 20 years of finance, accounting, mergers and acquisitions, sales operations and global leadership expertise to the company.
Before joining Finastra, Carissa spent several years as a Finance Executive at Quest Software, a mid-cap privately held enterprise infrastructure and identity management software company. She previously spent 5 years at Dell Technologies in various finance leadership positions, including Divisional CFO of the North America Small & Medium Business segment, a $7B business. Prior to Dell, she held various finance roles at Medtronic, a global producer of medical devices and therapies, and Sprint Nextel, an American telecommunications company.
Carissa is passionate about the development of future women leaders and is a sustaining member of The Junior League of Austin, an organization committed to promoting voluntarism and developing the potential of women.
Carissa holds an MBA from the University of Kansas and a BA in Business Administration from MidAmerica Nazarene University.
Ravi Metta, Chief Technology Officer
Ravi is responsible for Finastra’s global technology organization. He oversees all related functions including technical strategy, operations, cloud and platform transformation, as well as harnessing advanced technology practices to help deliver the future of financial services.
An experienced and hands-on IT leader, he is passionate about building high performing, global teams that put product innovation and operational excellence at the heart of everything. He has a proven track record in successfully creating new business lines and transforming companies, as well as driving customer value through strategic partnerships with data driven, modern platform technology.
Ravi brings more than 20 years of experience in technology leadership, product development and digital transformation to Finastra. Most recently he served as EVP, Chief Product Officer and Chief Technology Officer at Benefitfocus, where he transformed the organization to a product-led technology company and drove growth through scalable products that serve millions of consumers, enterprise and mid-size businesses.
Before that, he served as a member of Intuit’s Technology Executive Leadership Team, leading Enterprise Platforms and Product Management, driving platform strategy, innovation and product development for consumers, small businesses and accountants. He has also held technology and product leadership roles at other prominent technology companies including Dun & Bradstreet, Dell, and Sabre, amongst others.
Ravi earned a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering from Nagarjuna University and a Masters in Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin.
Elona Ruka-Wright, Chief Risk and Compliance Officer
Elona heads up Finastra’s global risk management and governance practices and is the company’s key liaison with regulatory bodies and auditors. She is accountable for Finastra’s Enterprise Risk Management framework, strategy and governance, as well as regulatory compliance, enterprise policy governance, client and third-party due diligence, business resilience, crisis management and internal audit.
As Finastra’s Chief Risk Officer, Elona has played a pivotal role in safeguarding their employees, clients, and operations, particularly through changes related to COVID-19. She believes that a culture of openness and awareness is the foundation for balanced risk-taking, and strong governance.
Elona is also a keen sponsor for #WomenatFinastra. She was named one of the Top 25 Women Leaders in Financial Technology of Europe for 2021, as well as being included in the – Top 100 Leaders in FinTech list by FinTech Magazine.
Before joining Finastra in March 2018, she spent over 15 years building and transforming risk management, compliance, security and governance programs at Wells Fargo, U.S. Bank and Black Knight. Her certifications span CISA, CISM, CGEIT, CRISC, CIPM and CDPSE, and she serves on the Advisory Board for NC State’s Poole School of Management ERM Initiative, which provides advice on ERM curriculum, emerging trends, and best practices related to ERM. She also holds a BA in International Relations, Magna Cum Laude, and an MBA in Finance and Strategic Management from University of MN, Carlson School of Management.
Vinay Patel, Chief Information Security Officer
As Finastra’s CISO, Vinay is responsible for establishing an intelligence led, threat-focused information security program capable of detecting and protecting against emerging cyber-attacks targeting Finastra and/or its clients. Having spent over 20 years in security leadership roles within the Financial, Defense Industrial, and Technology sectors – he has led multiple enterprise security transformation initiatives accelerating maturity in security programs and focused execution.
Prior to joining Finastra, Vinay was a Managing Director at Citigroup where he headed up information security for the Global Enterprise Operations & Technology division. He has served as the Chair for the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) Global Enterprise Advisory Board since 2016. Vinay holds a BSc. in Computer Engineering and an MBA in Finance/Technology.
Margaret Franco, Chief Marketing Officer, Finastra
Margaret is responsible for global end-to-end marketing and demand generation to support Finastra’s financial services platform and core software growth. Part of the Office of the CEO, she also leads the company’s sales academy. She has deep marketing and product management expertise, excelling at driving adoption and growth in the technology industry. In particular, she is passionate about demystifying complex technology solutions for customers and businesses to help them transform.
Starting her career at Compaq and HP in Houston, Texas, Margaret held multiple global leadership roles supporting both consumer and commercial technology segments.
She joined Dell Technologies in 2005, spanning various executive roles in North America, Europe and Asia in the commercial and enterprise product group organizations. She also led a number of global marketing functions including Vice President of Integrated Marketing Communications, where she was responsible for digital, marketing communications, agency relationships and brand positioning for Advanced Micro Devices. Returning to Dell Technologies and as SVP of Marketing, Margaret has also led field marketing teams around the world in Asia Pacific, Japan, Europe, Middle East and Africa. Margaret has an MBA in Marketing from the University of Houston and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Liberal Arts from Southern Methodist University.
Finastra places the principles of Environment, Social & Governance (ESG) and the business mantra of ‘doing well by doing good’ at the heart of their open and inclusive culture. Their corporate purpose is to orchestrate the sustainable financial empowerment of every single person on the planet through the collaborative power of technology, diverse talent and ecosystem.
This strategic approach and vision for ESG was formed at the inception of Finastra through their corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategy, which was launched in 2018. Their dedicated ESG team, which includes many members of the Executive Leadership Team, recognize the role all of their stakeholders play in the pursuit of objectives to improve the wellbeing of their employees, customers, partners, society and the environment in which they operate.
With their CSR foundations and ESG framework and ambition they have created a platform for positive social and environmental impact through philanthropy, education, job creation, economic growth and innovation.
ESG embedded into purpose
Finastra was created to provide mission-critical enterprise software to underpin the quality, availability and affordability of financial services for all.
Their governing purpose has not wavered since then, as they seek to unlock the potential of people, businesses and communities through open, inclusive and sustainable finance.
Adoption of Stakeholder Capitalism framework
To ensure consistency between their external impact goals and internal ESG performance, Finastra has adopted the World Economic Forum’s Stakeholder Capitalism framework, which defines 21 core metrics across the pillars of planet, people, prosperity and principles of governance. This helps to evaluate a company’s contributions to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in a consistent manner.
In addition, Finastra has made considerable investments into the development of ESG-focused solutions such as ICCxTradeComm, Trust Machine and Total Community Lending. These solutions are available to all their customers via their Collaborative ESG program as they pursue the UN SDGs and the objectives of their external ESG impact pillars of financial inclusion, social equity and their environment mission.
The Social Equity pillar supports people, businesses, and communities across the globe to help make them more successful, resilient and adaptable to change. This mission is delivered through three initiatives: investment in youth, DE&I and tech for good.
Finastra is acutely aware of its responsibility to minimize its impact on the environment together with their ability to reduce emissions in the financial services sector as an established fintech. This mission is delivered through three initiatives: carbon neutral Finastra by 2030, customer carbon footprint reduction and their sustainability agenda.
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