International Women’s Day: Celebrating Females in Fintech


One question I’m always asked during a Finovate networking session is, “Why don’t you put more women on stage?” My answer: we don’t dictate the gender of the company’s presenter. We leave that decision up to the company.

This post is to celebrate the fintech industry’s growth of female inclusion. At the first Finovate conference in 2007, there were zero women on stage. Last month, at FinovateEurope 2016, 20% of the companies featured a woman on stage (party on!). Here’s a look at the ladies of FinovateEurope 2016:

AdviceRobo’s CCO Rosali Steenkamer



BankersLab’s Co-founder and CEO Michelle Katics


CREALOGIX’s Geraldine Critchley, head of digital marketing

ebankIT’s Diana Winstanley, business development


Envestnet’s SVP Molly Pandya, product management

Ethoca’s Helene Ladjadj, senior manager, issuer relations, EMEA


EyeVerify’s Director of Marketing Tinna Hung


IT Sector’s Inês Domingues, market manager


Livian Technologies’s Raquel Oliveira, head of product


myInvenio’s Modesta Jonauskyte, sales and marketing assistant


Outshared’s Director Irene van den Brink

SBDA Group’s Anna Laskovaya, project manager


Spiff’s CMO Kristin Moller


While not all of these women are CEOs of their company, each plays a role in removing women from the “endangered species list” of fintech.

While we still have a long way to go, we can all be encouraged by the movement that has already taken place and the global initiatives that have sparked growth. The FemTech Leaders MeetUp, organized by Ghela Boskovich and Michelle Moffatt, has held three successful events this year (I attended the London meetup last month, and the attendance was impressive).

If you’re interested in attending a FemTech leaders event (men are also invited to attend), check out the upcoming meetup in Sydney or RSVP for the meetup in New York after the first day of FinDEVr New York on March 29. It’s less than a 10-minute walk from the venue.

This post wouldn’t be complete without a shoutout to the ladies of Finovate and FinDEVr; the women who help make our events happen (editor’s note: And of course, Julie Schicktanz, the author of this post):

  • Leah Baldwin
  • Dom Marczak
  • Emily Olyarchuk
  • Erika Sanchez
  • Kate Schultz
  • Kate Stolte
  • Heather Stowell
  • Paula Wrzecionowska

Be sure to check out our celebration of International Women’s Day on the FinDEVr blog.

Finovate Alumni News


  • “2015: A Year in Finovate Alumni Mergers and Acquisitions”

Around the web

  • TechTarget interviews Vantiv CSO Kim Jones on “creating a culture of security.”
  • Moneystream announces plans to close its doors in February 2016.
  • Nostrum Group earns a spot in Deloitte 2015 Technology Fast 500 for the EMEA region.
  • Zopa CEO Jaidev Janardana explains why 2016 will be the year P2P lending hits the mainstream.
  • Holvi is featured in this look at the top 10 startups in Finland.
  • TopFunded interviews BankersLab CEO Michelle Katics. See BankersLab at FinovateEurope 2016 in London in February 2016.
  • Credit Karma wins a spot on Fast Company’s 2015 Silicon Valley “Nice” list.
  • Emerging Prairie looks at how a local RIA is integrating Motif Investing into his business.
  • SwipeStox launches new features. Check out SwipeStox at FinovateEurope 2016.
  • Personal Capital Debuts First eBook: A Better Financial Life.
  • Backbase awarded accolades in Gartner report, Critical Capabilities for Horizontal Portals. Backbase will demo at FinovateEurope 2016.

This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.



FinovateEurope Sneak Peek: Bankers Lab


FEU2016_logo_withdateA look at the companies demoing live to 1,500 fintech professionals. Get your tickets to join us in London!


Bankers Lab designs virtual world training-simulations for fintech lenders and bankers. PortfolioQuest is a complex simulation game with billions of possible outcomes.


  • Skilled benchmarking of fintech lenders and bankers
  • Unlimited gaming outcomes in an SaaS-simulation environment
  • Train and benchmark entry through executive staff

Why it’s great
Lending skill benchmarking dashboards for CXOs, compliance, regulators, and investigators.


BankersLab_M_KaticsMichelle Katics, CEO
Katics is a former bank executive turned entrepreneur. She is driven by a mission to reinvent learning for the fintech and banking world. She led BankersLab from inception to scaling.


BankersLab_K_GingherKurt Gingher, Chief Technology Officer
Gingher’s 30 years of experience spans signal processing, software development, and the financial sector. He has led BankersLab software design from founding to scaling.

BankersLab Closes on Undisclosed Amount in Angel Funding Round


BankersLab, the company that refers to its training products as Flight Simulators for Bankers, announced today it closed a round of angel funding. The company has previously relied on its bootstrapped funds.

The amount of funding is undisclosed, but the San Francisco-based company hinted of its investor base, which includes financial and tech sector executives from the U.S., Germany and Singapore.

The San Francisco-based company plans to use the funding to accelerate development of PortfolioQuest, an SaaS-based simulation training product it will demo live at FinovateEurope 2016 in London.

BankersLab was founded in 2011. It has since offered training in acquisition, underwriting, collections, and account management to retail banking and fintech industry participants across 35 countries. The PortfolioQuest game, a spinoff of its original game series, enhances portfolio management skills by offering a single-player simulation game that allows participants to measure their performance against their colleagues and the fintech community at large.

BankersLab last demoed ScoringLab at FinovateAsia 2012.

Finovate Alumni News


  • “CAN Capital’s CAN Connect APIs Now Offer iPayment Merchants Access to Funds”
  • “Lenny Loves Dwolla: Digital Payment Network Helps Bring Microloans to Millennials”
  • “BankersLab Closes on Undisclosed Amount in Angel Funding Round” Come to FinovateEurope 2016 to see their live demo.

Around the web

  • TransferWise chooses UP Framework from ACI Worldwide to enhance its ability to grow network and add payment types.
  • Fenergo launches its Data Integration Manager, integrates with Avox, Omgeo, and Clariet Global.
  • Pakistan’s Habib Bank (HBL) to implement FusionBanking Corporate Channels from Misys.
  • TechCrunch interviews CEO Jeff Lawson of Twilio.
  • ThetaRay CEO Mark Gazit talks about the cyber attacks of the future for Infosecurity Magazine.
  • Coinbase to offer volume-based rebates for trades placed on Coinbase Exchange starting next week.
  • Kony launches Mobile Field Service solution to help enterprises mobilize and modernize their field service operations.
  • Microsoft’s Azure blockchain-as-a-service partners with Ripple, now operating a Ripple validating node for Ripple’s bank users.

This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.


BankersLab Takes the Gold at 2014 LearnX Impact Awards


Who’s got game? According to the judges of this year’s LearnX Impact Awards, that would be BankersLab.

An innovator in developing learning solutions for banks, BankersLab won the gold award for best game or simulation at the annual competition sponsored by the LearnX Foundation. The prize-winning solution was CreditLab, a training resource that helps players in a corporate classroom setting test their credit risk management and lending skills.

Michelle Katics, BankersLab CEO and founder said, “Our goal was to create a 21st century teaching tool for retail bankers that want to improve their skills in a profound way.”
BankersLab specializes in leveraging simulation technology and gamification to make it easier  for financial professionals to learn and perfect their craft. The company’s solutions, ScoringLab, CollectionLab, and CreditLab, feature simulation gaming software, training curricula, case studies and more. Risk managers and analysts, as well as collections, finance, portfolio, and operations managers in 25 countries have taken advantage of BankersLab’s training technology.
The non-profit LearnX Foundation was established to promote innovation in workplace learning and education. Regionally focused in the Asia Pacific, the organization will present BankersLab with its award at LearnX’s upcoming event in October in Melbourne, Australia.
Based in Castle Rock, Colorado, BankersLab is an international company with offices in Singapore, London, Dubai, Seoul and Cape Town, South Africa. The company demoed ScoringLab at FinovateAsia 2012. See the presentation here.

Finovate Alumni News– May 22, 2014

  • Finovate-F-Logo.jpgDigital Insight named a 2014 Confirmit ACE Award Winner.
  • Quisk describes their FinovateSpring experience.
  • Betterment CEO Jon Stein talks with Mad Money’s Jim Cramer about its automated investing service.
  • BankersLab’s CreditLab takes gold at 2014 LearnX Impact awards.
  • Nous adds Spark Feed to trading app to help players analyze market sentiment.
  • Xero ranked No #1 by Forbes in its list of the World’s 100 Most Innovative Growth Companies.
  • Authentify announces expanded biometric support for Samsung Galaxy S5 Fingerprint Reader.
  • InComm and Peoples Trust launch reloadable pre-paid card for m-payments in Canada.
This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.

BankersLab and FICO Launch New App in Brazil: Missao Positivo

Thumbnail image for BankersLabLogo.jpg

BankersLab, the company that gamifies financial learning, unveiled a new app in Brazil in conjunction with FICO today called Missao Positivo (Portuguese for “Mission Positive”).

The goal of the app is to:

    • help players take charge of their financial life
    • create a better understanding of their financial obligations
    • understand how payment behavior affects their credit options

FICO brings 57 years of experience in understanding how a consumer’s behavior impacts their credit risk. The new app helps it bring that knowledge to consumers with insights into how to improve their financial standing.

BankersLab last demoed at FinovateAsia 2012 where it launched ScoringLab. If you’re interested in seeing the lineup of companies for FinovateAsia this year, check it out here.

Finovate Alumni News– September 16, 2013

  • FinovateLOGO.jpgP2BInvestor raises $1.2 million in Series A round.
  • Toopher wins spot among finalists for IBM SmartCamp North America Regional competition.
  • MasterCard partners with Entrepreneurial Finance Lab (EFL) to promote small businesses in developing nations.
  • Finect provides winning entry for Web Marketing Association’s WebAward 2013.
  • Eli Lilly FCU selects Q2 for implementation of Unified User Experience.
  • Boost Mobile Wallet powered by Wipit now offers Quick Check RDC service.
  • BankersLab adds 4 senior financial services executives to its training team.
  • Rubatino Refuse Removal joins doxo, its paperless adoption jumps 10% in first 90 days.
This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.

Finovate Alumni News– June 6, 2013

  • FinovateLOGO.jpgCentral Intelligence Agency takes an actionable interest in Narrative Science.
  • IT operations management company Boundary touts its relationship with CurrencyFair.
  • Backbase CEO and co-founder Jouk Pleiter warns that bank customers are “no longer content to do the groundwork.”
  • Mercator Advisory Group analyst takes a look at TSYS’s proposed acquisition of NetSpend.
  • Mitek, LendUp, & Fuze Network dubbed runners up in 3rd Annual Core Innovators Mega Challenge.
  • TIO Networks announces strategic relationship with Aio Wireless.
  • Stockr wins Vator Splash LA startup competition, crowned most exciting company.
  • BankersLab launches Bank-it: Credit Edition.
  • Personal Capital to establish a Denver office and hire 100 financial advisers.
  • Business Insider interviews Braintree CEO, Bill Ready.

<div This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.