One Broadway, 5th Floor
Cambridge, MA 02142
October 24, 2019
3:00 - 8:30 PM
ABOUT THIS EVENT
FinTech Connect 2019
Venture Cafe’s FinTech mini-conference is taking place on October 24, 2019. This special ‘conference night’ event seeks to bring together the brightest minds who are building, funding, and innovating in the Greater Boston area’s FinTech Community. Join us for the evening to examine the shifts happening in payments, blockchain, lending, robo-advisors, insurance tech, and real estate. Come prepared to not only hear the best ideas and see the latest technologies but also to participate in building Boston’s FinTech innovation.
FinTech Connect is hosted by Venture Cafe and brought to the Greater Boston community by:
AGENDA AT A GLANCE
3:00 – 8:30 PM NETWORKING
3:00 – 5:00 PM OFFICE HOURS
4:30 – 5:30 PM INTERACTIVE PANEL: MYTHBUSTING FINTECH FOR UNDERSERVED
5:30 – 7:30 PM STARTUP DEMOS
5:45 – 6:45 PM PANEL: FINTECH: CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES
5:45 – 7:30 PM FINTECH FLASH TALKS
6:45 – 7:45 PM ROUND TABLE: WOMEN IN FINTECH CHANGING THE STUDENT LOAN NARRATIVE
7:00 – 8:00 PM ROUND ROBIN: WOMEN IN FINTECH
INTERACTIVE PANEL: MYTHBUSTING FINTECH FOR UNDERSERVED (4:30 - 5:30 PM)
Mythbusting FinTech for Underserved
Conventional wisdom often tells Americans that building short-term savings is the key to building wealth. However, due to factors such as income volatility, increasing debt, unexpected expenses, and frankly savings accounts that are failing to meet their needs, Americans are struggling to build an emergency fund and are taking on high cost debt or dipping into their retirement accounts to address their financial challenges. Before building wealth, people need to achieve a baseline level of short-term savings. Join us for a conversation on tackling the emergency savings challenge through a variety of engagement models and non-traditional channels. We will discuss what it will take from the fintech ecosystem for everyday Americans to move beyond short-term financial security to long-term wealth.
Brian Gilmore, Commonwealth
Brian Gilmore is a Director at Commonwealth, where he manages a team dedicated to accelerating the growth of financial product innovations by partnering with the financial services industry, policy makers, employers and other mission-driven organizations, with the ultimate goal of making wealth possible for everyone. Prior to Commonwealth, Brian spent over a decade at forward-thinking organizations tackling a variety of social challenges including youth education, access to public benefits, and financial security.
Taylor Straatmann, Commonwealth
Taylor Straatmann is a Senior Innovation Strategist at Commonwealth, where she focuses on scaling successful product, service, and policy innovations. She also previously worked at Compass Working Capital, providing financial services to families with low income, and the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, focused on next generation talent retention, business attraction, and racial equity in the private sector. Taylor earned a Bachelor of Arts Summa Cum Laude in Economics with a minor in International Affairs from Northeastern University.
FINTECH DEMOS (5:30 - 7:30 PM)
Venture Cafe demos are a great way to gain exposure through our online and offline channels. During our FinTech Connect event, Venture Café will give a selection of the area’s start-ups, inventors and researchers an opportunity to showcase their work to the Boston community.
Startups interested in demoing should apply at www.vencaf.org/entrepreneurapp.
PANEL: FINTECH: CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES (5:45 - 6:45 PM)
Fintech – Challenges and Opportunities
With the synergy of finance and technology, Fintech has the potential to disrupt current business practices in many major industries. Challenges range from cyber-security, regulation, and the potential loss of the human touch. Opportunities exist for payment systems, banking operations, investment management and financial advisers. This panel discussion aims to categorize these opportunities and challenges for the near and long term as well as the technologies that are powering this transformation. Panelists will discuss their own experiences and what the future will hold as FinTech makes its steady climb into business.
Moderator: Ahmad Namini, Brandeis University International Business School
Ahmad Namini is a Professor of the Practice of the Practice of Business Analytics at Brandeis University’s International Business School. He teaches courses in computer programming, quantitative analysis, machine learning, and sports analytics. Dr. Namini has served as a quantitative analyst/developer, desk strategist, analytics head and CTO in the fixed income and credit derivative spaces for various investment banks and hedge funds. He has a PhD in Computational Mechanics from the University of Maryland.
Beralda Kokoshi, State Street
Beralda (Ada) Kokoshi is a VP in the Digital Product and Innovation team at State Street. Her work focuses on new business models and products in custody, trading and asset servicing for digital assets and blockchain technology in capital markets. She is passionate about FinTech and the impact emerging technologies on institutional finance.
Ada is also passionate about diversity of thought in the workplace. She currently serves as the President of the Ellevate Network -Boston Chapter and was an entrepreneurship mentor at BUILDBoston.
Sumedh Mehta, Putnam Investments
Sumedh is Chief Information Officer for Putnam Investments. He is responsible for the overall strategic direction and execution of Putnam’s global technology solutions. In addition, he is a member of Putnam’s Operating Committee. Mr. Mehta has over 20 years of experience in managing information technology systems in the investment industry, where he has led transformational change in the areas of software development, information technology, and business operations. Mr. Mehta joined Putnam in 2015 and has been in the investment industry since 1988.
Leo Guyshan, Open Avenues Foundation
Leo is the Chief Operating Officer of Open Avenues. Previously, he was the Program Director at MassChallenge Boston, where he helped design the accelerator while streamlining processes and operations for the Boston program and site. Before MassChallenge, Leo worked at the Harvard Business School Rock Center for Entrepreneurship where he managed the HBS Entrepreneur-in-Residence program and developed alumni entrepreneurship programming. Leo graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Brandeis University with a B.A. in Politics and Russian.
COMMUNITY FLASH TALKS (5:45 - 6:30 PM)
2019 Flash Talks
5:45 – 6:30 PM
Deniz Johnson, Pera-Partners, LLC
“Slaying Bias In AI – An Implementer’s guide”, Santa Clara Conference Room
Deniz Johnson is a results-driven FinTech executive who combines long-range vision with a proven track record of building high-performance global organizations. Balancing strategic insight with hands-on technical knowledge, Johnson is an innovative digital transformation and operational performance leader for the financial services, software and healthcare industries in North America and Europe. As a FinTech thought leader and Top100 RegTech Influencer, Johnson brings an insider’s view of the top global institutions as she provides advisory services in Boston and New York.
Dan Bolt, Capital One
“How to Move a Top 10 Bank to the Public Cloud”, St. Thomas Conference Room
Technology professional with 8 years of experience working on and managing technology teams across HR and Finance at Capital One.
Kirk Brunson, Capital One
Kirk is a Data Engineer at Capital One working on a next generation analytics platform. Prior to banking he worked in pharmaceutical analytics, EdTech, and completed a bachelors and masters in computer science.
COMMUNITY FLASH TALKS (6:45 - 7:30 PM)
2019 Flash Talks
6:45 – 7:30 PM
Stefania Di Bartolomeo, Founder, Physis Investment
“Driving capitals to sustainable investments”, Octave Conference Room
Stefania is a first degree Impact Investing Fund Manager in Italy and institutional investors advisor. Stefania is also a sustainable Fintech founder and lecturer and public speaker at local Universities, including Harvard. Stefania will hit on thinking critically on sustainable investment, moving from concept and ideas into real and feasible portfolio construction.
Jake Tamarkin, Co-Founder & CEO, everyday life
“Life insurance is Broken…Why You Should Care and How you Can Fix It”, St. Thomas Conference Room
20 years leadership as innovative insurance executive at MetLife, EY and now as a start-up entrepreneur position Jake as a leading expert on the issues surrounding life insurance in the United States. At a time when more Americans are challenged for financial resilience, the life insurance industry finds itself ill prepared to help. This session will explore opportunities on the value chain where entrepreneurs can create solutions.
ROUND TABLE: FINTECH CHANGING THE STUDENT LOAN NARRATIVE (6:45 - 7:45) PM
FinTech Changing the Student Loan Narrative
Micha Sabovik, MentorWorks Education Capital
Micha Sabovik is the Chief Operating Officer & Vice President of Marketing at MentorWorks Education Capital. Joining MentorWorks in July 2019, she oversees the day-to-day operations of the company as well as all marketing functions. Micha has nearly 25 years of experience in higher education in marketing, enrollment, recruiting, career services, & financial aid. Micha also teaches a graduate level social media course at Boston University.
Sabrina Manville, Edmit
Sabrina is co-founder of Edmit, which helps families make smarter college decisions. Prior, she was an AVP at Southern New Hampshire University, where she led marketing and growth strategy for an internal start-up, College for America. Sabrina has worked with leading higher education institutions throughout her career to better serve students and their missions. Her prior experience includes work with venture-backed ed-tech companies, Pearson, and Ithaka. Sabrina has an MBA from Stanford and a BA from Yale.
ROUND ROBIN: WOMEN IN FINTECH (7:00 - 8:00 PM)
Round Robin: Women in FinTech
A conversation around women leadership in seed stage FinTechs – how’s it different when it’s there and what’s missing when it’s not. How does an organization leverage the assets of women leadership and how do startups create an inclusive environment from the beginning to recruit women leadership early.
Raven Smith, Jointly
Eilon Shalev, Elphi.io
David Fragale, Arwen.io
Dipali Trivedi, everyday life
ABOUT OUR SPONSOR
Brandeis International Business School is part of Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts. By teaching rigorous business, finance and economics, connecting students to best practices and immersing them in international experiences, the school prepares exceptional individuals from around the globe to become principled professionals in companies and public institutions worldwide.
FINTECH CONNECT 2019 PHOTOS