Finnish small business digital banking service Holvi will start 2017 with a new CEO.
Former Sulake CEO Antti-Jussi Suominen has been hired by Holvi to serve as the company’s CEO starting in January. Suominen will replace Johan Lorenen, who was Holvi’s CEO for three years. “I am proud to have the opportunity to work for a service innovator like Holvi,” Suominen said. He highlighted the fact that Holvi is owned by BBVA, praising the FI for its “ambition to become the digital bank of the twenty-first century.”
Holvi Board Chair Martti Granberg pointed to Suominen’s experience in building online services and businesses around the world as one major plus of the hire. “His previous experience from various senior executive roles in startup and corporate environments helps in leading the company in its international expansion,” Granberg said.
Prior to his more than three-and-a-half years as CEO of Sulake, Suominen was head of international business development at Elisa, and head of entrepreneurial activities at Nokia Americas Bridge Program. Suominen has also served on the boards of GmbH and Beijing Mobiledu Technology Company, a joint venture between Pearson and Nokia. Suominen has spent more than six-and-a-half years at Nokia working in a variety of capacities, including general manager and head of business development. He is a graduate of the Finnish Naval Academy, the Helsinki University of Technology, and the International Institute for Management Development.
Founded in 2011 and headquartered in Helsinki, Finland, Holvi demonstrated its technology at FinovateEurope 2013. In August 2016, the company announced it would partner with fellow Finovate alum SumUp to provide payment services to SMEs and self-employed entrepreneurs who are clients of Holvi. The previous month, Holvi launched its new debit card, the Holvi Business MasterCard for business users in Austria, Germany, and Finland. The company was named to the European Fintech Top 100 this spring, along with 28 of its fellow Finovate/FinDEVr alums, shortly after being acquired by BBVA for an undisclosed amount.