As of 1 July, I have officially taken over the reins as CEO of Earthport. And I’ve never been more excited to start a role! I pride myself on being open and informal, so in my first blog I wanted to tell you why I joined.
Before Earthport I had spent three years as a senior executive at Microsoft. Now I’m sure some of you would find yourself asking “why swap a giant like Microsoft for a company specialising in B2B cross-border payments?” Well for me it came down to one thing. Potential. Earthport has huge potential. In fact, in 25 years of a career I don’t think I’ve seen a company with more potential. And I’m super excited about putting all of my experience to work here at Earthport to support the customers, our employees, and our stakeholders to realise that potential!
Earthport started with an ambitious vision: build an end-to-end payments network that will transform the inefficient and complex world of cross-border payments. Over the years it invested heavily in building a network and gathering the global compliance and regulatory expertise needed to make it work. There have been bumps and missteps along the way, but on a journey there always are.
Fast-forward to today. Earthport has one of the biggest networks in the world, spanning 67+ countries including current and emerging markets, with a bank-grade compliance function. Why is this important? In 2018, the fintech revolution has made making transactions easier than ever before. But when it comes to international B2B payments we’re still talking days not seconds. On some country-to-country routes a posted cheque would arrive quicker than a bank transfer. Added to this, the traditional ‘correspondent’ model used to transfer payments around the world is declining as banks ‘de-risk’. A model that many believe is out of keeping with the demands and expectations of today’s consumer. Fintechs are trying to fill the gap but they still need the established financial rails to work. The industry is searching for a new model and solution that technology by itself cannot solve. The solution? Enter Earthport.
I believe Earthport is at a tipping point. Both fintechs and traditional financial institutions are looking for what we have. We have a chance to use our assets and expertise to help define the future of international payments. And a team with a level of payments knowledge that has blown me away. Yes there are big challenges to overcome. But having run 19 marathons on every continent in the world, I don’t believe any challenge is insurmountable. But we must move fast!
We already have an enviable client list, and a record number waiting to go live. We’re talking to some of the biggest names in the tech and finance industries who want to partner with us. The time for Earthport to fulfil its true potential is now.