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RegTech’s female power: meet the industry’s leading female founders


As LEXcellence we strongly support female involvement in RegTech and LegTech, also through the close collaboration with Swiss-Polish Blockchain Association (which is fostering the relationship between Poland's and Switzerland's blockchain and crypto communities) and Swiss LegalTech Association (which is supporting the legal industry with a better understanding of the legal technology market). Currently, the WOMEN TECH GLOBAL CONFERENCE 2020 (unite 100 000 Women in Tech to Drive Change with Purpose and Impact) event is taking place and we recommend you to join.  The Managing Partner of LEXcellence - Dr. Kasia Lasota Heller, has also mentioned about the female success and gave some advice in the interview for ENNBOWoman - here is a part of it:

ENNBOW: Switzerland is also a second home for ENNBOW. But, as our CEO mentioned in her last interview, entering with the brand on the Swiss market was stressful, to say the least.  Suppose there is a female entrepreneur willing to establish her business in Switzerland. How could LEXcellence help her?

Dr. Kasia Lasota Heller:  The Swiss market may seem difficult and costly, because its workforce is expensive. But keep in mind that the production is highly automated here. Interestingly, thanks to technology, production costs are now comparable both in Poland and Switzerland. Yet the made in Switzerland tag can encourage your manufacturer to increase their margins up to several dozen percent. As the OPolkaCH leader I support female entrepreneurs in developing their businesses in Switzerland. Bear in mind every canton has a different tax system. This is why I always advise my ladies to, first of all, get informed on what kind of tax credit they are eligible for. At LEXcellence, we provide our clients with legal assistance throughout all stages of their business development, ranging from setting up the company, through creating contracts and regulations, till conducting eventual judicial proceedings.

If we were to say that tech is a woman, it would be a largely false statement. Women remain largely unrepresented mostly in leading position in the tech world, and according to Statista, only 1 out of 4 executive, senior-level and management positions in S&P 500 companies is held by a woman. 5 major tech companies (Amazon, Facebook, Apple, Google, and Microsoft) employ between 28% to 42% of women in their workforce, although females represent 47% of the US labor force. They are also offered lower salaries: in fact, adeva’s report on “The State of WOMEN IN TECH” states that the median Silicon Valley male makes 61% more than the median Silicon Valley female, and more than 50% of women in tech leave their workplace mid-career, often to restart a career in a brand-new industry. Luckily, not all the statistics paint a gloomy picture of women’s representation in Tech. Although females are severely underrepresented, their position in the tech’s world has been slowly improving. In 2019, female-founded and mixed-gender teams managed to raise over 17,2 billion US dollars in venture capital investment, which was a 10,6% increase from 2018’s results. Fortune 500 companies with at least 3 female directors have noted a 66% increase in return of invested capital, 44% increase in return on sales, and +53% increase in return on equity. With the changing tech landscape, female founders are making waves, especially in emerging industries like RegTech. In 2020,  The RegTech Association hosted The RegTech Awards for the second time ever and included a category of the RegTech Female Founder of the Year to celebrate achievements of female Reg tech founders. Applicants had to be members of The RegTech Association (RTA), and their organizations were required to have at least one current Female Founder and be a Founder-Lead RegTech firm. Here are 8 projects and ladies appreciated by RTA’s judges:

Sophie Gerber - TRAction FinTech

Named the 2020 RegTech Female Founder of the Year, Sophie Gerber is a co-founder of the TRAction, “specializing in regulatory trade and transaction reporting across Europe and the Asia Pacific”. The company processes over 7 million daily reportable transactions to improve reporting processes for 80 financial firms, brokers, investment managers, and banks. Sophie is an expert in providing compliance and legal services and has years of experience in regulatory compliance under her belt.

Leica Ison - Skyjed

Skyjed, named after the Tibetan word for growth, is an AI software that automates and optimizes every aspect of product management. By assessing a product’s health, automating workflow,  tracking regulatory obligations, and encouraging collaboration, Skyjed is designed to boost your product growth and reduce the amount of work required to thrive on the market, like administration and legal compliance. Leica’s professional experience focuses on product growth and engineering teams, and according to her LinkedIn page, she has “launched more than 55 technology products to market across consumer and B2B markets”.

Lisa Schutz - Verifier

Designed to ensure both security and comfort of consumer data sharing, Verifier is an innovative “online consumer data verification platform” offering “privacy-by-design”. Aside from her work in Verifier, Lisa is one of the founding Board members of The RegTech Association, actively promoting the adoption of RegTech in Australia.

Rachael Greaves - Castlepoint

Defined as a data castle, Castlepoint is a powerful information management and regulation system that manages all the records in your organization, optimizing record-management, reducing the risk of data breaches, and making information-searching processes easier. Rachel is an Information, Records Management, and Security specialist, and she is engaged in numerous consulting projects.

Kerry Grass - AML 360

AML 360 is a solution that helps companies to meet their legislative requirements, providing them with the assistance of a dedicated specialist, who keeps his finger on the pulse of companies’ legal compliance. Kerry Grass is a seasoned specialist in legal compliance and anti-money laundering, and she has gained her experience in several government agencies, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand.

Jacqui Nelson - Dekko Secure

Dekko Secure is a tool created to revolutionize office workflow by making file sharing more secure and traceable, improving the speed of a company’s internal communication, and optimizing work emails.  Based in Australia, Jacqui Nelson leads Dekko Secure’s digital revolution of the office processes.

Joanne Smith - Recordsure

Founded in 2012, Recordsure is an AI-powered tool that “reviews customer interaction data with human-level intelligence and machine-powered capability” to improve compliance, and customer care and culture. British Growth Fund invested £13 million in Recordsure, recognizing its potential to revolutionize compliance and customer service.  Joanne’s vast experience in financial services and her drive for innovation earned her many awards, including the FDM everywoman Entrepreneur of the Year in 2018.

There are also few other female RegTech leaders that we would like to strongly highlight:

Noemi Malska - 300Brains

300 Brains is a global provider of code development for Startups | SME's | Enterprises,
with its offices in USA (San Francisco) and Poland (Warsaw). They are creating dedicated IT teams + consulting in the newest trends in banking/digital/mobile solutions in the FinTech & RegTech industry and many others. They understand products, processes and procedures because they created them.

Chris Gschwend - OpenVASP

OpenVASP is an open protocol to implement FATF’s travel rule for virtual assets. The protocol facilitates robust compliance for VASPs, solely based on a set of principles, regardless of jurisdiction or virtual asset and without membership or registration with a centralized third-party. The project is based in Switzerland.

Technology’s impact may be imprinted all over our future but will tomorrow’s tech world be equal and fair to everybody regardless of their sex? Only time will tell, but one can hope that tech innovation will translate to workplace innovation, and the industry will welcome creative and promising tech professionals with open arms regardless of their sex, race, and nationality. For the time being, female founders in the RegTech industry are definitely blazing a trail for future generations. According to adeva’s report on women in tech, lack of mentors, and female role models in the field are primary reasons why females are underrepresented in technology. Innovative founders like Sophie Gerber might finally turn the tide.

RegTech 100 Report 2020