International flavour to Australian fintech award judges

A stellar range of judges from diverse international and domestic backgrounds will be choosing the best and brightest in the Australian fintech environment as part of the inaugural Finnie awards being announced on 24 May.

A total of 39 judges will be reading 158 award entries and deciding who will take home the 30 categories in Australia’s first industry-backed fintech awards. Of these 39 judges, 16 are currently based overseas.

Six judges have been selected to decide the headline Australian FinTech Organisation of the Year award, for which 19 entries have been received.

These judges are:

  • Catherine Berman – Co-Founder & CEO of US fintech CNote which was chosen as the 2017 Best Startup Pitch Company at the iconic South by SouthWest Festival in Austin, Texas. CNote helps people deposit and grow their savings and at the same time help companies and organisations which are achieving social good.
  • Kristy Duncan – a Canada-based CEO and founder of Women in Payments, an international organisation which promotes learning, innovation, career development and gender parity in the payments industry. Women in Payments is a sponsor of the Finnies.
  • James Lloyd – Hong Kong-based Asia-Pacific FinTech Leader of globally integrated professional services organisation EY. Mr Lloyd leads EY’s dedicated financial technology capability across Asia-Pacific, supporting growth-potential start-ups and forward-thinking incumbents.
  • Abhi Anuket – US-based founder of Magnivia Ventures, a strategic investment and venture development firm based in New Jersey with cross-border interests
  • Vivek Bhatia – the Sydney-based CEO of Icare, a public financial corporation which insures more than 284,000 NSW employers and their 3.4 million employees.
  • Marla Heller – Director of Debt and Equity Investment Strategy at the NSW Government’s Jobs for NSW, which is the official partner of the Finnies.

FinTech Australia CEO Danielle Szetho said she was pleased with the broad expertise and international flavour of the judging panel.

“By selecting these judges, we are helping promote the cream of Australia’s fintech sector to an amazing domestic and global audience which should help many of our fintech startups on their growth journeys,” she said.

FinTech Australia Director of Events & Sponsorship, Vanessa Ronan-Pearce, sourced nine of the overall judges from attending this year’s SXSW Festival. Known as one of the world’s top tech events, this year had a particularly strong global fintech focus.

“I’m really pleased that we’ve got a fantastic cross-section of judges from all corners of the international fintech industry, who will bring great expertise and integrity to the judging process,” Ms Ronan-Pearce said.

Ms Berman expressed her appreciation for bringing such a global lens to fintech.

“I believe some of the best solutions for the future of finance will come from unexpected places – including women, minorities and eco-systems around the world. It is impressive to see Australia’s Finnie awards pull together such an international arena,” she said.

Ms Duncan, from Women in Payments, stated: “As an engineer and former banker, I can’t over-emphasise the importance of innovation in the financial services market. Innovation, often driven by fintech, is a global imperative for our industry, and I’m delighted to be supporting the Finnies in this initiative.”

The Finnies winners will be announced at a gala ceremony at a secret but intriguing Sydney location on 24 May.

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About FinTech Australia
FinTech Australia is a national association for the Australian FinTech Startup community. Our vision is to make Australia the leading market for FinTech Innovation and Investment by working with both sides of Government, Industry and the Australian FinTech community to create a supportive environment and partner ecosystem in Australia and abroad.

Media Contact
Danielle Szetho
Chief Executive Officer
FinTech Australia
Ph. 0414075423
Email: danielle@fintechaustralia.org.au

Mark Skelsey
Head of PR and Communications
FinTech Australia
Ph. 0403197523
Email: mark@fintechaustralia.org.au