Meet the speakers of 2021
Corine Ackermann is Startup Relations Lead at the InsurTech Hub Munich. As the person responsible for bringing innovation into the hub from universities or startups, she oversees all scouting for the accelerator programs as well as continuously creating thought leadership content to support the continuous digitising of an industry with enormous innovation potential. Having lived in 3 continents, studied International Relations & International Law, and being a former founder herself, Corine has a keen interest in helping startups and founders overcome the business culture barriers of working in Germany and insurance
Radoslav is the founder & CEO of Bitbond, a leading company in the field of asset tokenization and digital asset custody technology for banks and financial intermediaries. Before founding Bitbond, Radoslav worked for Roland Berger Strategy Consultants and advised banks in Europe and Western Africa in restructuring and post-merger integrations. Prior to that Radoslav was with Deutsche Bank London in sales & trading of structured products.
Markus Ampenberger is a Partner and Associate Director at BCG in Munich. His focus is on strategy projects, post-merger integration and transformations for banks, payment service providers and FinTechs. Prior to BCG, Markus worked two years with a German regional bank and spent several years in academia. He has a doctoral degree from Technische Universität München and was a Visiting Fellow at Harvard University.
Vanda leads the sales team for the DACH region at Mollie. Thanks to her expertise in the field of payment and e-commerce, she helps online merchants to increase their conversion rates in the webshop checkout process, by advising on the right payment mix.
Before Vanda joined the Amsterdam-based scale-up to grow the sales team in the DACH countries, she worked for 9 years at Wirecard. She can look back to an incredible journey, where she lastly managed a large team as Head of Sales.
Burkhard Balz, born in 1969, has served on the Bundesbank’s Executive Board since September 2018 and is responsible for the Directorates General Payments and Settlement Systems, Economic Education and International Central Bank Dialogue. In his responsibility for the Directorate General Payments and Settlement Systems Balz deals with the Bundesbank’s oversight of CCPs and its contribution to the Eurosystem’s market infrastructure (Target 2, Target 2 Securities, Collateral Management and Instant Payments) as well as with the Bundesbank’s positioning towards innovation and tokenisation in the world of payments. He is a member of the Eurosystem High-Level Task Force on central bank digital currency (CBDC).
Chris Bartz is CEO & Co-Founder of Elinvar. Chris is responsible for the strategic development of Elinvar. He is driven by the goal to build sustainable partnerships with impact. As Chairman of the Working Group FinTechs & Digital Banking at Bitkom as well as the Chairman of the FinTechRat at the Federal Ministry of Finance, Chris advocates a strong ecosystem for fintech and digital banking as well as the benefits of digitalization.
Armin Bauer is an entrepreneur with heart and soul. During his studies, he was already active as an entrepreneur and involved in setting up successful start-up companies. Armin studied electrical engineering at the TU Munich and management at the "Center for Digital Technology and Management" of the Munich universities. He is Co-Founder of Amiando (now Xing Events) and IDnow. Since the formation of the company in 2014, Armin Bauer works in the role of CTO and Managing Director at IDnow.
Jost Brehm is an experienced sales manager with more than 25 years of consulting and sales practice in the financial services industry. During his career, he held various positions at large international corporations, medium-sized enterprises as well as start-ups and used his expertise to support global banks and insurance companies. With his many years of experience at the interface between banking and insurance-specific business requirements and technology – including AI, analytics and data management - Jost Brehm is leading the financial services team of InterSystems in the DACH region and focuses on helping the industry make the most out of their data.
Vinicius Carrasco holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Stanford University and, since 2018, is the Chief-Economist and Regulatory Affairs Executive Officer at StoneCo. Prior to joining StoneCo, Carrasco was the Research and Planning Executive Officer at BNDES, where, in 2016-2017, he co-led a major reform of the credit market in Brazil. Since 2005, is a Professor of Economics at PUC-Rio.
Dr Nazim Cetin
- 2017 – PRESENT | ALLIANZ X GMBH – CEO
- Lead Allianz SE’s digital investment unit.
- 2012 – 2017 | BERTELSMANN SE – VICE PRESIDENT CORPORATE DEVELOPMENT & NEW BUSINESSES, HEAD OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
- Design and execution of Bertelsmann’s divisional digitization strategy (incl.M&A).
- Lead global Bertelsmann Marketplace/Platform initiative.
- Restructured operations in Turkey, expanded service scope by SCM services via M&A
- 2009 – 2012 | AGORA42 VERLAGSGESELLSCHAFT MBH – FOUNDER AND MANAGING DIRECTOR
- Founder and publisher (together with bestselling author Richard David Precht) of first German magazine focusing on philosophy and economics.
- 2004 – 2007 | MAPLE BANK GMBH – VICE PRESIDENT COMMERCIAL FINANCE
- Developed commercial finance division (Germany, UK and Canada).
- Grew commercial finance portfolio from USD 200mn to USD 1.1bn.
- 2003 – 2004 | VEGA STRUCTURED FINANCE GMBH – CO-FOUNDER AND MANAGING DIRECTOR
- Advisor for banks (IBB AG, KSK Ebersberg, Maple Bank) and SMEs.
- Structured and placed transactions with face value EUR 100+ mn.
- 2002 – 2003 | LANDESBANK BADEN-WUERTTEMBERG – TRAINEE INVESTMENT BANKING
Malte Dummel is COO & CFO at Xempus. He is responsible for implementing the firm’s strategy, driving the firm’s revenue and growth, as well as finance, investor relations, HR, and legal.
Malte joined Xempus in 2017 after 8 years at Goldman Sachs in London where he was responsible for advising German and European corporates on pensions, financing, and M&A. He received a Bachelor and a Masters degree in economics, with a focus on finance and statistics, from the University of Oxford.
Xempus is the independent Software-as-Service (SaaS) platform to simplify pension & life insurance for all stakeholders.
Kim Felix Fomm
Raisin Chief Investment Officer (CIO) Kim Felix Fomm leads the fintech’s Investment and Pension Products division. Before joining Raisin in 2019, Kim helped build the digital asset manager Liqid, as managing director responsible for investments, finance, and business intelligence, having previously worked at BHF-Bank in the areas of asset management and alternative investments. He studied business administration at Frankfurt School of Finance & Management and HEC Montréal, and political economy at Zeppelin University and King's College London.
Adam Gagen is Vice President of Government Affairs for Europe, the Middle East and Africa for American Express.
Adam began his career with the European Commission in Brussels. He was posted to Taiwan as the EU’s Economic and Trade officer and this is where his specialisation in international government affairs began. After the Commission he managed Public Affairs in Asia for Pernod Ricard, one of the world’s largest wines and spirits business, based out of Beijing and Hong Kong. Adam relocated to Europe four years ago to take on a global government affairs role promoting and protecting the interests of the world’s largest brands, focused specifically on marketing regulation (such as consumer protection, data privacy, ad fraud, etc). He was based between Brussels and London, but again spent most of his time doing work in individual markets in Europe and further afield in key markets in Asia, Latin America and Africa. Adam joined American Express in 2017, based out of London.
Adam has a degree in the Social Sciences, and a second degree in Law. He speaks French and Mandarin.
Katharina Gehra belongs to the “Top 40 under 40” - a ranking by the German business magazine Capital. Furthermore, Katharina Gehra has been nominated as expert on the subject of blockchain for parliamentary hearings at the German Bundestag.
Katharina Gehra is the Co-Founder of Immutable Insight, an innovative German start-up that delivers 100% reliable insights on blockchain in real time for traders and investors and a new era of advanced compliance. She is also a supervisory board member at the Fürstlich Castell'sche Bank. She uses her entrepreneurial passion as an active early stage investor. Previously she has been the CEO of Interritus Limited and a supervisory board member at Kommunalkredit Austria AG. Before her career in the private equity industry, she worked as a Project Leader at The Boston Consulting Group and Commerzbank AG. She holds a MSc in International Political Economy from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Paolo Gentiloni is the European Commissioner for Economy since December 2019.
He served as Prime Minister of Italy (2016- 2018), Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (2014-2016), Member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (2013-2014) and Minister of Communications (2006-2008).
Previously he was Spokesperson for the Margherita Party (2002-2007), Chairman of the Broadcasting Services Watchdog Committee (2005-2006), Spokesperson for the Mayor of Rome and Commissioner in the City of Rome (1993-2000). Previously he worked as a professional journalist.
Born in 1954, Gentiloni graduated in Political Sciences from La Sapienza, Rome.
His last book is “La sfida impopulista” (the (Un)populist challenge).
Lorenz Graeff has collected more than 25 years of experience in B2B sales and the cross-industry digitalisation of business processes in the areas of finance, telecommunications, real estate, and media. Lorenz is a serial entrepreneur and CEO of InsurTech startup bsurance, which has quickly grown into one of the leading market players, licensed to operate in the whole of Europe, and already active in six different markets. Established in 2017, bsurance started its mission with embedded insurance solutions, enabling customers to connect with fair and relevant insurance products at the right time and place: At the Point of Sale.
Dr Wolff Graulich
Dr Wolff Graulich heads the Bitkom working group ‘Digital Insurance & Insurtechs’ and is concerned with uniting the insurance and IT trades in value creation. He previously headed the digital insurer Element for 3.5 years and has been a partner at the IT service provider Senacor Technologies since 2020 to further expand the insurance business. The company specializes in the digital transformation of companies from the financial sector, automotive and public services.
Carmen Grosse is an Enterprise Account executive based in Munich. Carmen´s entrepreneurial mindset has led her to spend the last few years in the vibrant Munich start-up scene. Before joining Box in 2020, Carmen was Regional Sales Manager at award winning HR Tech company Talentry, working with enterprise clients across Germany. At Box her main focus is on enabling insurance and financial services companies to simplify collaboration with their customers and employees alike and to secure their most valuable content. Carmen holds degrees in International & European business as well as an MSc in Economic History from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Matthias Hach is CEO of both wallstreet:online AG and wallstreet:online capital AG. He is in particular responsible for the growth of the neo-broker Smartbroker and the strategic transformation from a portal operator to a provider of modern financial services. Until February 2021 he was responsible for Digital Banking & Brokerage, Marketing, and Comdirect as divisional board member of Commerzbank AG.
Hach started his career at Berliner Volksbank before moving to Berliner Effektenbank AG in 1999 to implement the reorganization of a brokerage division. From 2000 onwards Hach was involved in the establishment of E*TRADE Bank AG as a general representative and was appointed managing director of E*TRADE Germany in 2003. In 2010 he moved to ViTrade AG as a member of the Executive Board. From 2013 to 2015 Hach was managing director of flatex GmbH. In 2016 he moved to Comdirect Bank AG and was appointed to the Management Board and CMO in January 2018.
Patrick Hansen heads the blockchain & crypto division at the German technology trade association Bitkom. During his lead, the tech association built the largest and most active blockchain network for corporations, banks, startups and scientists in Germany and is considered the first contact point for politics and media for Blockchain-related activities. Bitkom’s blockchain network includes almost 60 startups and fintechs, 15 banks, as well as hundreds of other experts from various companies and industries. Patrick was previously a project manager at Bitkom, holds master degrees in business and political science and gained his first professional experiences at an investment-firm and in the European Parliament.
Georg is General Manager at N26, the mobile bank, for Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Previously, he led N26’s global Lifecycle and Product Marketing. Before N26 Georg Hauer was General Manager at Uber and management consultant at the Boston Consulting Group. He holds an MBA from The Kellogg School of Management in Chicago and a Magister from WU Vienna.
Maren Heiß – Head of Retail Banking of Deutsche Kreditbank AG (DKB) since October 1st 2020 – is responsible for the Retail Banking Business in cooperation with her colleague Sascha Dewald. Her main responsibilities are Risk- and Regulatory Management, Payment (Account & Cards), Online Sales, Brokerage, Banking Experience and Business Development. In addition to that, she is the sponsor of two of the most important projects within DKB.
In her role, she is focusing on both growing and monetizing the Retail Banking of DKB and at the same time ensuring a high client satisfaction.
Jessica Holzbach is a founder of Penta, the digital only banking platform for SMEs with more than 6,000 business clients in Germany. Before that she founded her first startup out of university and spent major part of her career as a management consultant, supervising various CRM projects for financial institutions and insurance companies.
As Chief Legal and Regulatory Officer, Caroline Jenke is part of the management team at FinTecSystems (FTS), the leading open banking and data analytics provider in the DACH region. Caroline represents FTS on a national and international level before supervisory authorities, political institutions, and associations. Prior to joining FTS, Caroline worked for Sofort / Klarna as General Counsel and headed the legal department of the rapidly growing Fintech company. She was for example instrumental in creating the foundations which led to the development of the second Payment Services Directive (PSD2). With over 10 years of experience in financial technology, Caroline brings not only deep legal knowledge but also a profound technical understanding of Open Finance.
Monika Jones is one of Germany's leading bilingual presenters of international conferences – both on stage and virtual. Her regular clients include top multinational companies and industry associations, government ministries and European institutions.
As an English speaking business anchor at Germany's global TV broadcaster, Deutsche Welle, Monika is familiar to a wide international audience, especially in Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
Monika has taken part in major international summits, moderating high-level panels at the G7, the G20 and the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP).
While her specialist areas include global economics and finances, Monika also regularly hosts conferences on climate change, life science and digital technologies.
Monika presented the live broadcasts of the European Space Agency's historic Rosetta mission as well as the launch of the European Union’s Galileo programme and the adventurous SAR-Operation Shark Bait.
Albrecht Kiel has been Regional Managing Director for Central Europe at Visa since October 1, 2015. He is responsible for the business in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands.
Albrecht Kiel started his professional career at Unilever. Following this, he held various line roles in the media industry in Germany and Austria – including a position at Bertelsmann Direct Group.
From 1998 to 2013, he held executive positions in the insurance industry. As CEO of Direct Line Versicherung AG, Albrecht Kiel led the German direct insurance business at the Royal Bank of Scotland and then, as CEO Allianz Direct, the European direct insurance business at Allianz.
More recently, he advised financial services companies in Germany and Europe as a management consultant with a focus on digitalization, sales and marketing at Bearing Point.
Albrecht Kiel studied at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg and holds BA and MBA degrees from the University of Detroit, USA.
Kim is a young professional from Germany, currently working for Germany's digital association Bitkom e.V. in Berlin.
Before moving back to Germany, she was living right next to the Silicon Valley to develop digital innovation strategies for German companies and support transatlantic and international projects.
She has a background in Psychology, Economics and Policy (Osnabrück, Vancouver, Oxford) and has worked on the intersection of psychology and politics.
Dr Stefan Knoll
Dr. jur. Stefan M. Knoll is a lawyer, an Officer in the German Army and an entrepreneur with over thirty years of leadership experience. He is the founder and CEO of DFV Deutsche Familienversicherung AG, which he took public in 2018 as the first functioning InsurTech in Europe after successful digital transformation and positioning. His new book “Thinking and Leading in the Digital Age" was published in 2019 by Deutscher Fachverlag (dfv).
Delia König is Managing Director of the Identity Unit at Solarisbank, the tech company with a banking license. She manages and oversees the business unit that has built a platform comprising cutting-edge identification solutions for fintech, banks and other digital companies looking to offer a smooth onboarding process for their customers. Prior, she worked as an IT Consultant in one of Europe's leading financial services consultancies, zeb, where she was the youngest consultant in the company. Afterwards, she gained experience as a Product Manager and entrepreneur. Delia studied Information Systems at the University of Münster and holds a Master’s degree in Digital Banking from Stevens Institute of Technology. In 2019, Delia was selected into the prestigious Forbes 30 under 30 list in the category "Europe- Finance", which honours the achievements of individuals who have already made an extraordinary impact on their industry before reaching the age of 30. Further, Delia's success with the Identity Unit and her role in championing diversity in the fintech sector was honored through her place on the "Women in Fintech Powerlist 2019", compiled by the industry body Innovate Finance.
Dr Jörg Kukies
- 1998: A-level, Gutenberg Grammar School in Mainz
- 1990 – 1994: Studies in Economic Sciences at University Paris I (Pantheon-Sorbonne)
- 1995 – 1997: Master of Public Administration at John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
- 1997 – 2001: Ph.D. in Finance at University of Chicago, Graduate School of Business
- 2001 – 2004: Employee, Product Development, Goldman Sachs International, London
- 2004 – 2011: Employee and since 2007 Head of Share Transactions Division Germany/Austria, Goldman Sachs International, Frankfurt/Main
- 2011 – 2014: Head of Share Derivatives Division Europe, Middle East and Africa, Goldman Sachs International, London
- 2014 – 2018: Co-Chairman of the Executive Board, Goldman Sachs AG & Head of the Frankfurt Branch of Goldman Sachs International
- Since 2018: State Secretary, German Federal Ministry of Finance
Donald Lacey is Chief Investment Officer at Ping An Global Voyager, a growth-stage fintech and health tech venture fund formed by Ping An Group. Mr. Lacey joined Ping An from Citigroup, where he worked as a managing director in a variety of corporate and investment banking roles across Asia Pacific. While at Citigroup, he led the bank’s advisory efforts on numerous high-profile cross-border M&A and capital raising transactions for Asian insurance, banking, and technology firms. Mr. Lacey commenced his career as a financial analyst at Goldman Sachs in New York. He has an SB from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a JD from Harvard Law School.
Sebastian Langrehr is CSO at Friendsurance and responsible for Market Strategy & Sales with banks, insurance companies and fintechs. He is also a co-initiator of FRIDA (Free Insurance Data Initiative)
Johannes Leser ist Geschäftsführer der Namirial Deutschland GmbH, einer 2018 gegründeten Tochtergesellschaft des weltweit agierenden Vertrauensdienstleisters Namirial mit Hauptsitz in Italien. Er ist verantwortlich für Business Development, strategische Partnerschaften und den Vertrieb in Deutschland und der Schweiz.
Zu seinen Kernkompetenzen zählen die Beratung der Kunden bei der Orchestrierung ihrer Prozesse im digitalen Management von Transaktionen – von der Identifizierung über die Authentifizierung bis hin zu rechtswirksamen Willenserklärungen mit Hilfe elektronischer Signaturen und Siegel. Er verfügt in diesem Bereich über ein Jahrzehnt an Erfahrung, auch durch frühere Management-Tätigkeiten im Business Development und Vertrieb bei Softpro und Kofax. Johannes Leser hat sowohl sein Jura- wie auch sein Betriebswirtschaftsstudium mit dem Bachelor abgeschlossen.
Dr Christian Macht
Christian Macht is CEO of ELEMENT Insurance AG. Prior to joining ELEMENT, he held several top positions in the digital industry. He acted as CSO Europe at the technology company Rakuten, Supervisory Board Member of the Rakuten Europe Bank, and beforehand as the COO Central Europe for Groupon and at Boston Consulting Group as project leader for several years. Christian Macht has a degree in Economics and Sinology from University Tübingen and a doctoral degree in law.
Felix joined Visa in 2015. He leads Visa’s Business Development on Fintech & non-traditional FIs in Central Europe. Felix previously worked at American Express. He graduated from Goethe University Frankfurt, majoring Finance & Accounting.
As a management consultant, Maria Mann managed IT projects for banks and financial service providers and supported them in digitizing their processes. At the end of 2018, she founded Financery and developed a digital, intuitive financial service to inspire more women to invest their money. The financial service includes an investment proposal tailored to the customer based on globally diversified ETFs, the setup of a depot, and ongoing portfolio monitoring including risk management. In the core team in Düsseldorf, 8 women work for Financery, together with IT, asset management and the bank, there are 40 employees.
Kiana Mardi has recently started to run a Micro VC, investing in early-stage tech startups. Before, she has been a founding team member and Investment Director of ALSTIN Capital, a 100m+ tech fund.
Before her career as a VC, she was able to build the startup Holidu, a meta search site for vacation rentals, into a global successful player in the vacation rental market.
As the founder and CEO of the online fashion company Glamloop, she successfully sold her company to a competitor with leading European venture capital firms such as Holtzbrinck Ventures.
At Rocket Internet, Kiana Mardi contributed significantly to the development of Zalando and the Zalando Lounge and was assigned, among others, at the portfolio company eDarling.
On behalf of the private equity firm Aurelius AG, Kiana Mardi was able to restructure two portfolio companies as a restructuring manager.
Christopher is the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Finoa, a leading European digital asset custody and financial services platform for institutional investors and corporations.
Prior to Finoa, Christopher was a Senior Consultant at McKinsey & Company, serving Banks and Insurance companies on Strategy, Corporate Finance, and Digital Transformation, and previously at BHF-BANK in Frankfurt in the Asset & Wealth Management department. He earned a degree in Business Administration from WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management (Vallendar/Germany) and University of Southern California (Los Angeles/USA) and received his MBA from IE Business School (Madrid/Spain).
Markus Mechnich is a Senior Sales Engineer and has been with InterSystems since 2002. His current field of activity is the support of our partners in the application of the InterSystems core technology, especially for companies in the financial sector. Mr. Mechnich holds a diploma in computer science (University of Applied Sciences Worms) and a Master of Science degree in business informatics from the University of Duisburg-Essen. Prior to InterSystems, Markus Mechnich worked for Oracle Germany as a Consultant Financial Services in development projects of large German banks. Afterwards, he was responsible for the development of a system for investment accounting in banking for several years.
Alex Mifsud is a serial payments entrepreneur creating EntroPay, a TechTrack 100 company and Visa’s first virtual prepaid card programme in Europe. He later founded Ixaris, a Fintech 50 innovator in global B2B payments with a multinational client base including Amadeus, Axa and Lufthansa-subsidiary Airplus. Alex’s most recent venture, Weavr.io, is an embedded banking platform for developers, innovators, payment vendors and financial institutions to collaborate safely and efficiently. His non-profit work includes co-founding the Malta Internet Foundation, and more recently the London Blockchain Foundation. Alex has a Honours Bachelorship in Electrical Engineering and a PhD in Computer Science.
Fabian Nadler is leading the Digital Insurance & InsurTech division at Bitkom. In this role, he drives the digitalization of the insurance industry, connects start-ups with corporates and works to ensure that regulation combines innovation and customer needs. Previously, he completed his Master's degree in Economics and gained experience in the strategy department with a focus on innovation management in a global reinsurance company, among other things.
Christiane Neumüller has many years of leadership experience in multinational organizations. In more than 20 years, she has especially build up expertise in the areas of payments, banking, card management and processing. Her strength is strategic business development. Before becoming a partner at Senacor Technologies AG, she held leading positions in several IT departments of banks. As Country Manager and MD at SIA Group, she was responsible for the entire German market. Among other positions, she was Head of Payment and Cards at UniCredit Group. Christiane Neumüller is familiar with the trends in the national and international payment and card industry. Whether CBDC, in-app payments, rtp, blockchain, cloud technology for payments and much more, she recognizes the necessary strategic steps to drive innovation.
Achim Oelgarth has been working in the financial industry and advises tech startups for over 20 years now. He is the CEO of the East German Banking Association and he lately initiated the Berlin Finance Initiative (BFI) on ist way to become the voice of Berlin's hub for technology-based finance and digital economy. Previously, as UniCredit‘s Head of Institutional Affairs Germany, he was responsible for the political and regulatory affairs team of the pan-European bank. Before that, from 2004 to 2009, he established and led the representative office of the Association of German Banks at the European Union in Brussels. Achim studied law at the University of Bonn. In 1998 he was admitted to the bar. At MIT Sloan School of Management he has been doing research on artificial intelligence and its implications on business strategy.
Enrico has strong experience in Business Development among leading US financial institutions as well as the corporate landscape in Europe. In his current role as Head of Innovation of Europe’s leading Fintech ecosystem, he orchestrates the Business Development for finleap by combining superior offerings of the portfolio companies, he has conducted diverse investment management projects for finleap’s portfolio companies and strategizes new growth opportunities for finleap. In addition to that, he is a lecturer at the International School of Management and leads finleap’s support for the de:hub Fintech Berlin.
Dr Anika Patz
Sebastian Pitzler worked at ERGO, one of the largest German insurance companies, for 16 years in various positions at the IT and insurance departments in Cologne, Düsseldorf, and Berlin.
In recent years, Pitzler has specialised in strategy, innovation, and digitization in the insurance industry. Between 2015 and 2018 he was responsible for setting up and expanding the insurer’s innovation lab in the Berlin startup ecosystem as Head of ERGO Digital Lab.
Since spring 2018, Sebastian is the Managing Director of InsurLab Germany e.V., the platform to connect insurance companies and InsurTech start-ups in Germany. The platform is part of the so called “de:hub” digital hub initiative of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.
Pitzler completed his Executive MBA in Innovation and Business Creation at the TUM School of Management (Technical University of Munich).
Dr Bernhard Rohleder
Bernhard Rohleder (born 1965) was one of the founders of Bitkom e.V. at the end of 1999 and has been the association's Chief Executive Officer since then.
Rohleder began his professional career with positions at ZF Friedrichshafen GmbH in Saarbrücken, the press publisher Ploetz in Berlin and the Brandenburg Ministry of Economics in Potsdam. In 1994, he joined the Information Technology Association of the VDMA and ZVEI, Frankfurt/Main, as Press Spokesman and Assistant to the Executive Board. Three years later, Rohleder took over the position of Deputy Managing Director there and shortly afterwards that of Managing Director. In 1997, he was simultaneously appointed Secretary General of Eurobit, the European umbrella organisation of the IT industry, with headquarters in Brussels and Frankfurt. In 2000, he merged Eurobit with the European Association of the Communications Technology Industry to form the new umbrella organisation Digital Europe and subsequently represented the German high-tech industry on its board. In 1997/1998, Rohleder also led the General Secretariat of the International Information Industry Congress (IIIC), the world association of the IT industry. From 1997 to 2005, he also headed the market research institute European Information Technology Observatory (EITO) as Managing Director.
Rohleder is a member of the advisory board of the German Institute for Trust and Security on the Internet (Divsi) and of the jury of the "Made in.de" start-up prize. Among other things, he represents the industry in the relevant committees of the Federation of German Industries (BDI). In the 17th legislative period, Rohleder was a member of the Enquête Commission of the German Bundestag "Internet and Digital Society".
Rohleder studied political science from 1987, first at Saarland University and later at the Paris Institut d'Etudes Politiques, where he graduated in 1991. He received his doctorate (Dr. rer. pol.) from the Free University of Berlin. Rohleder is married, has one child and lives in Berlin.
Reuben joined Onfido in 2016, helping the business grow from a team of 50 to over 450 employees. As a Regional Director for Northern Europe, Reuben has been instrumental in informing their product growth with his comprehensive market knowledge. Reuben is an advocate for innovation in finserv, regularly speaking on the topic at industry events.
Prof Dr Philip Sandner
Prof. Dr. Philipp Sandner has founded the Frankfurt School Blockchain Center (FSBC). From 2018 to 2020, he was ranked as one of the “top 30” economists by the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ), a major newspaper in Germany. Further, he belonged to the “Top 40 under 40” — a ranking by the German business magazine Capital. Since 2017, he has been a member of the FinTech Council of the Federal Ministry of Finance in Germany. He is also on the Board of Directors of Avaloq Ventures and of the Blockchain Founders Group, a Liechtenstein-based venture capital company focusing on blockchain startups.
The expertise of Prof. Sandner includes blockchain technology in general, crypto-assets such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, the digital programmable Euro, tokenization of assets and rights, and digital identity.
Since 2018 Axel is CTO of Allianz Germany and, since 2021, also CTO of Allianz Technology. In both roles, Axel contributes to the digital transformation of Allianz: he is committed to establishing a Tech Culture, but also promotes a “tech craftsmanship” and an agile way of working at Allianz.
In addition to his profession at Allianz, he is a member of the Digital Advisory Board for “Deutsche Sporthilfe” and a sponsor of the Digital Leadership Academy, a program designed to bring digitalization closer to students.
Over the years, Axel gained a wealth of experience both within and outside the Allianz. Particularly influential for him was his time in Silicon Valley, where he most recently worked for three years as CEO and President of Allianz Technology of America Inc.
With his studies in the area of IT und business administration, Axel laid the foundation for his comprehensive expertise in IT management that he has today.
Michael Schweikart is Co-Founder of Tomorrow, a sustainable banking provider based in Hamburg. Before making money part of the solution with Tomorrow, he co-founded MigrantHire & Jobs 4 refugees, a platform that connects refugees with employers. Prior to that, the industrial engineer worked as CFO for an online staffing platform and as Corporate Finance consultant at Concentro Management AG.
Sonja Scott is Vice President Global Commercial Services, Continental Europe at American Express. American Express issues credit cards to private and business customers and offers finance solutions for corporate clients. It also provides credit card acceptance at stationary merchants and within the e-commerce. Sonja leads the growth strategy for different business segments including small and mid-sizes companies to large and global corporates, meeting their evolving needs for travel and expense management. Before her current role, Sonja was the Country Manager for Amex in Germany and General Manager for the Merchant Business in Germany, Austria and the Nordics. Under her leadership e.g. Aldi and Lidl agreed to accepting Amex cards and PAYBACK American Express Card was launched in Germany. Prior to joining American Express, Sonja worked at Banco Santander and Citibank in Frankfurt.
Aiga Senftleben is Co-Founder of Billie, a Berlin based, breakthrough fintech startup that aims to upgrade the operating system of B2B payments. Aiga is a trained solicitor and before founding Billie, she gained experience in the Fintech and payments sector through working as General Counsel of Funding Circle Europe as well as Legal Counsel for PayPal.
Dr Lea Siering
Dr. Lea Maria Siering is CRO at finleap connect GmbH and is responsible for Compliance, Information Security, Legal and Public Affairs. With more than 10 years of experience in the financial sector, she was most recently Chief of Staff and Director Regulatory Affairs at finleap GmbH, Partner at Taylor Wessing in the Regulatory department and General Counsel at CrossLend GmbH. She is the author of numerous publications on regulatory topics, especially related to digitalization, and co-edits the journal "Recht Digital" published by Beck Verlag.
Mirjam Staub-Bisang, Managing Director, is Country Head of BlackRock Switzerland and a member of the EMEA Executive Committee as well as a Senior Advisor to BlackRock Sustainable Investing (BSI). Prior to BlackRock, Mirjam was CEO and co-founder of Independent Capital Group AG an investment management firm focusing on sustainable investing based in Zurich. Mirjam holds a PhD in Law from the University of Zurich and an MBA from INSEAD. She authored the standard work "Sustainable Investing for Institutional Investors" (NZZ 2011), "Sustainable Investing for Institutional Investors: Risks, Regulations, Strategies" (Wiley 2012) and co-authored the second edition of "Infrastructure as an Asset Class" (Wiley 2016).
Miriam Unser is Head of Sales & Business Development at TechQuartier, a cross-industry and multi-stakeholder ecosystem in Frankfurt, created as a next-generation innovation broker and orchestrator. TechQuartier’ s mission is to bring startups, corporates, investors, talents, mentors, and public stakeholders together to work, meet, learn, and collaborate. Miriam is responsible for growing TechQuartier’s community, with a strong focus on Fintech, and creating new business opportunities for and in cooperation with its members and partners. Before that she has been working in the consulting & investment banking industry in Germany and Europe and has experience in the evaluation of new business models, agile project management and digital product development.
Thomas Vagner is Country Lead DACH at Klarna. In this role, he is responsible for all commercial activities in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Vagner has been focusing on e-commerce & marketplace business models for over 10 years. He started his career at Rocket Internet, where as Global Venture Development Manager he helped build and grow Zalando and Westwing, among others. Before Klarna, Vagner was the founder and CEO of an automotive tech company.
Vilve Vene is the CEO and Co-Founder of Modularbank, the financial technology company based in Tallinn and Berlin offering a next-generation core banking platform that enables a rapid rollout of new financial services both for banks and other businesses.
Vene is an Estonian financial IT pioneer, having started creating innovative financial technology well before the term “fintech” even became a tangible concept. For more than 25 years, she has been digitising banks and setting up financial technology companies. She is one of the bright minds behind the Estonian e-tax system and has been recognised as “Highly Commended” Woman in Tech at Banking Tech Awards 2020.
Born 1974, MBA
Stephen Voss started his professional career at Allianz AG in Frankfurt. After graduating in business management in 1997 he worked for the Deutsche Bank AG and for the Halifax-Bank of Scotland in Luxembourg for more than 10 years.
After several other stations of his career, he acted as General Management Executive Manager for AIG Group in Frankfurt for the German and Austrian market from 2010 to mid-2013.
From 2013 to 2016 he held the position of Profit Center Manager Broker Personal Lines & Small Business for the Zurich Insurance Group. At the same time, Stephen was also CEO and in charge of the Executive Office at Baden-Badener Versicherung AG for Sales & HR.
Kristina has over 10 years of digital experience and is now the CEO and former CPO at Nuri, formerly called Bitwala. Before starting her roles at Nuri, she has worked at N26 and Zalando during their hyper-growth stages. At N26 she was the product lead and at Zalando she was in the loyalty and Mobile Apps team, where she delivered customer-centric solutions and drove the mobile mindset within Zalando’s various departments.
Before building products on the company side, Kristina worked as Mobile Consultant and Account Manager for agencies like Aperto and Iconmobile, building up mobile strategies and creating innovative mobile solutions for major clients in the retail, television, NGO and automotive industries.
Fabian is a former investment banker with a strong track record as a founder, investor and mentor of successful start-ups. Fabi oversees the financial strategy for wefox Group, including preparation of the business and investment case for each investment funding round. He is also the co-founder of EMPAUA, which is one of Europe’s highly successful start-up incubators where he and Julian Teicke (CEO and co-founder) launched wefox Group.
Having broken his landlord’s vase, Christian Wiens realized how complicated insurance was and began Getsafe with a like-minded entrepreneur he met on Facebook. As CEO of Getsafe, Christian is on a mission to disrupt insurance the same way that Amazon took on retail - making the experience as easy as online shopping. Christian holds a master’s degree in mechanical engineering and is an already experienced digital entrepreneur with a strong background in tech, entrepreneurship and product development.
Dr Heike Winter
At the Deutsche Bundesbank, Dr Heike Winter is responsible for policy issues relating to digitalization in payments. This comprises committee work in the Eurosystem on retail payments and the discussion about a digital euro. After completing her degree in economics, Heike worked at an institute for economic theory. She joined the Deutsche Bundesbank in February 1999, working initially in the Public Relations and Economic Education Departments before transferring to the Payments Department in March 2007.
Patrick Wirth has been responsible for Baloise's mobility ecosystem activities since mid-2018. After the founding of an independent unit, he has been Head Mobility Unit since April 2020 and in this role is responsible for all Baloise activities in the area of mobility that go beyond the core insurance business.
Previously, he launched the Startup Investment Fund for Baloise in 2017 and has made over 15 investments to date.
He studied business administration with a specialisation in insurance management and holds a second degree in industrial engineering.
After starting his career in the Controlling and Accounting department of Mannheimer Versicherung, he joined the Family Office of Mr. Hopp (a founder of SAP) as Head of Controlling. He joined Baloise in 2011, initially in the Pricing department, and took over as Head of Accident and Health Insurance for Baloise Switzerland in 2015.
Miriam Wohlfarth is Founder and Managing Director of Ratepay and Co-Founder of Banxware. In both Fintechs she is responsible for the areas of Innovation, Marketing and Sales. With almost 20 years’ experience in online payment, she was most recently Country Manager Germany of the international payment service provider Ogone (Ingenico Payment Services). Prior to that, she played a significant role in establishing the electronic payment transaction business for the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and its payment services subsidiary Bibit in Germany.
- Starting your own Business
Memberships and advisory boards (excerpt)
- Partner, Paymentandbanking - PBA Experts GmbH
- Member of the Board - German Startup Association
- Member of the Presidential Committee - Bitkom
- Chairman - Advisory Board Junge Digitale Wirtschaft BMWi
- Partner - Startup Teens
- Bits & Pretzels
- Retail Bankentag 2019
- Regelmäßige BILANZ Kolumnen – welt.de
- EWPN Amsterdam 2019 @Money2020
- Digital Finance Conference | digifin19
- Retail Bankentag 2019
- Grace Summer Camp
- Heureka 2019
More about Miriam
Lukas has helped build Penta almost from the beginning. In the fall of 2017, he joined as Chief Product Officer. Together with his team, he is responsible for everything to do with product, data, design, research and product marketing in the Penta offices. Four years earlier, at the age of 21, he had started his career in investment banking at Morgan Stanley in London. Shortly after, his deep-rooted entrepreneurial spirit drove him to launch his own fintech startup in London. The company targeted then-financially excluded consumers with the goal of improving the way they managed their finances. Since then, he has focused on developing products that add real value to customers' daily lives. Lukas graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from the University of Mannheim in 2014 and was honored as a member of the Forbes 30 under 30 in Europe in 2020.
Join us at #digifin21!
Digital Finance Services meets disruptive technologies: One of the industries that have been tackled the most by digital disruption is banking and finance. The highly regulated financial industry is witnessing a metamorphosis from traditional banks to data-driven platforms. Digital disruptors are reshaping the way the financial service industry works.
On 9 and 10 June 2021, Bitkom is hosting the virtual melting pot of national and international experts at the upcoming Digital Finance Conference. You will have the chance to discuss the exciting tech trends and developments that are shaping the financial industry. Learn from the best about how we can use the technological advances in the financial sector to make the most of our future.