FinTech Wales, an independent membership association and champion of the FinTech and Financial Services industry in Wales, has named Sarah Williams-Gardener as its first CEO.
A former director of public affairs at Starling Bank, Sarah joins FinTech Wales just a few months after its first birthday.
Sarah spent 17 years at IBM, latterly as government affairs director working with government departments, as well as working on commercial and innovation projects. Sarah was also a founding member of the team behind the challenger bank Starling. Since leaving Starling in June 2019, Sarah held an interim CEO role at charity Hope for Children, as well as being market, consumer insights and product design team at Fair 4 All Finance.
Sarah’s appointment as CEO will lead FinTech Wales through the next stage of its development. She brings a wealth of corporate affairs experience to the role and is in a perfect position to actively support the advisory Board in implementing its vision for the future and make Wales a leading player in the Global FinTech community.
Sarah said: “I am thrilled to be joining FinTech Wales as its first CEO. This is such an exciting time for FinTech globally, but even more so in Wales with so many companies both emerging and thriving. The ability to combine my passion for FinTech and Wales is super exciting, I’m looking forward working with the FinTech Wales’ members to put Wales firmly on the FinTech and financial services map globally.”
FinTech Wales founder and chairman and UK government’s FinTech envoy for Wales Richard Theo, said: “We were looking for someone who shares our passion for the industry and who will work with the Board to strengthen our position in Wales, the UK and beyond. Sarah is just that person. It’s wonderful to welcome Sarah to the team as she has a huge amount of experience that will be a huge benefit to FinTech Wales.”
Founded in July 2019, it has already nurtured and supported businesses in Wales as well as setting up a roadmap to establish Wales as a force in the FinTech community worldwide. In its first year, the association established an Advisory Board of 20 people including representation from Welsh companies including Credas, Confused.com, Admiral, The Principality and Capital Law.
FinTech Wales was also awarded £250,000 by Cardiff Capital Region to further drive its vision to make Wales a global player in the FinTech and financial services sector.