BankTech

Synctera stacks C-Suite to help connect community banks and fintechs

As “fintech is going berserk,” the San Francisco-based ramps up executive hires to capitalize on growth opportunities

Synctera, which aims to serve as a matchmaker for community banks and fintechs, has stacked its C-suite with some impressive executive appointments.

The highlights:
– Kirsten Muetzel joins as chief compliance officer and VP of finance
– Shepherd Smith hired as VP of partnerships
– Lydia Inboden hired as head of sales
– Dave Holmes-Kinsella hired as head of data science

The San Francisco-based startup recently made some highly notable executive hires, including a former Federal Reserve regulator and a former director of business development for Google Pay.

The company tapped Kirsten Muetzel as chief compliance officer and VP of finance. Muetzel previously held “high-profile positions” at the Federal Reserve Banks of New York and San Francisco. Most recently, Muetzel was Head of Finance at EarnUp.

The company also appointed Shepherd Smith as VP of partnerships. Smith spent almost a decade at Google playing key roles in a variety of products most recently of which was Google Pay.

Synctera also appointed Lydia Inboden as head of sales and Dave Holmes-Kinsella as head of data science — Holmes-Kinsella held “notable roles” at Facebook and Rakuten. Meanwhile, Inboden worked the past two years at Q2 where she sold banking-as-a-serving to fintechs and led Q2’s go-to-market strategy for card programs.

Synctera’s co-founder and CEO Peter Hazlehurst told FinLedger that he made these key hires because the company is experiencing so much demand and has a lot of customers. Not to mention that with the current state of the economy, “fintech is going berserk,” he said.

“It’s just a function of [the fact that] we’re growing really fast,” Hazlehurst said in responding about these key executive hires. “And there’s this opportunity to capitalize on that growth.”

Hazlehurst was Head of Uber Money until August 2020, when he left to launch Synctera.

Synctera has developed a platform designed to help facilitate partnership banking. It was founded on the premise that some community banks and credit unions are actually turning down deals with young fintechs because the relationships can be too complicated or time-consuming to manage. Synctera’s goal is to connect community banks and fintechs to streamline the process.

Currently, Synctera has about 35 employees but is looking to have 90 employees by the end of 2021, which would more than double its employee headcount.

Going forward, Hazlehurst said he knows that Synctera has competition in the fintech marketplace.

“I believe we have a really good team, we have a good tech stack and we have good customers,” Hazlehurst said. “We’ll be a worthy competitor to the marketplace. But we’re going to have to win deals, it’s not just going to be magic, things aren’t just going to happen.”

In December, we wrote about how Synctera came out of stealth with $12.4 million in seed funding.

In other banking technology news, OnDeck, an online lender for small businesses, has nailed down a partnership with HomeAdvisor that delivers access to the platform’s more than 200,000 home improvement, maintenance and repair professionals.

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