Diverse leadership in any sector sets the path for broader idea generation and further economic expansion. According to the Diversity For Growth report 2021 by Findexable, a global platform gathering progressive data on women in fintech, women-founded fintech companies make 78 cents in revenue per every dollar of funding they receive, while male-founded fintechs generate only 31 cents, which is almost half the value. Yet male-founded fintechs still receive twice as much the investment globally compared to their female peers.
Expecting similar growth in the region, today, The Recursive wants to put a spotlight on female fintech founders of Bulgaria, Romania, and Greece, showcasing successful women in tech creating innovative solutions in the financial sector.
We have compiled а list of 15+ female fintech founders and their business models, operating in different niches, such as payments, open banking, creative sphere, real estate, blockchain and others.
The Female Fintech Founders From Southeast Europe
Name and Role: Anita Stoeva, Co-Founder and COO/CEO of FidU Trade
Vertical: SMEs Accounting
What the company does: Founded in 2020, FidU Trade is a digital, fintech-enabled online platform, funded by Vitosha Venture Partners, that allows Western European small and medium-size business exporters manage their receivables and assess credit risk.
Name and Role: Antonina Martinova, Co-Founder of Phos, CEO of Paynetics
Vertical: Digital Payments
What the company does: Phos is a fintech start-up established in 2018. By partnering with Paynetics, a European B2B digital banking platform provider, Phos was able to deliver an innovative solution, Software Point of Sale, which allows merchants to accept card payments directly on their NFC-enabled phone or another Android device without the need for any additional software
Name and Role: Galya Dimitrova, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Iris Solutions
Vertical: Open Banking
What the company does: Licensed by Bulgarian National Bank and funded by Innovation Capital, Iris Solutions is a financial services company that develops fintech solutions, aiming, thus, to create a secure and accessible environment that connects businesses and their customers. The company provides payment services, as well as account aggregation, API monitoring, data analysis, and processing.
Name and Role: Galia Jordanova, Founder of Musketari.bg
Vertical: Real Estate
What the company does: Musketari.bg is a fintech platform that helps users secure financing of their future real estate purchase. The company offers expert consultations, helps choose the best mortgage offer, as well as provides legal advice.
Name and Role: Kremena Stoyanova, Founder of Elca.bg
Vertical: Personal Expense Management
What the company does: Using publicly available information Elca.bg, funded by Vitosha Venture Partners, allows its commercial and private users to compare prices of different energy providers and choose the best option.
Name and Role: Sonya Bonova, Co-Founder and CEO of Rilla
Vertical: Personal Finances, Insurance
What the company does: Rilla, which is a part of Management Financial Group, is a mobile application for personal finance management. The app allows its users to open a free IBAN account, without opening, maintenance, or closing fees. The users can manage their money by making bank transfers, paying household bills, finding online insurance and getting a credit.
Name and Role: Alina Stefan, Co-Founder and CEO of Salarium Fintech
Vertical: Income and Expense Management
What the company does: Salarium Fintech is a Romanian mobile application that allows employees of medium and big-size companies to request salary advances without fees or interest. Furthermore, the app educates its users on managing income and expenses and setting financial objectives.
Name and Role: Ana-Maria Georgescu and Mihaela Georgescu, Co-Founders of Smart Fintech
Vertical: Open Banking
What the company does: Smart Fintech is a Romanian startup focused on delivering open-banking (third-party access to financial data) solutions to individuals and legal entities. Smart Fintech is the first fintech company in Romania to be authorized by the National Bank of Romania (BNB).
Name and Role: Annemarie Fabian, Co-Founder of SOLO
Vertical: SMEs Accounting
What the company does: SOLO is a B2B platform that provides administrative help with billing, accounting, and online filing. The functions include tracking expenses, issuing invoices, managing taxes.
Name and Role: Diana Drajneanu, Co-Founder and CTO of Vestinda
Vertical: Crypto, Investments
What the company does: Vestinda is an investments dashboard that allows users to link all their crypto accounts in one and automate their crypto investing. For beginner traders, the platform provides a library of ready-made investment strategies with a purpose of educating and helping to make informed decisions.
Name and Role: Diana Seredenciuc, Co-Founder of Bankata
Vertical: Personal Finance
What the company does: Founded in 2020, Bankata is a fintech platform that aggregates and compares financial products through analyzing personal loans, credit card scores, investment accounts, and mortgages.
Name and Role: Ioana Hasan, Co-Founder and Product Manager of SmartBill
Vertical: SMEs Accounting
What the company does: SmartBill, funded by Catalyst Romania, is a SaaS solution that provides invoice software for small businesses. The offerings include billing options, inventory management, and accounting. With SmartBill users are able to keep up with clients’ data, customize their own invoices, and access reports.
Name and Role: Irina Albita and Maria Tanjala, Founders and CEOs of FilmChain
What the company does: FilmChain is a cloud-based collection system that serves creative industries by collecting and allocating their revenues and optimizing management processes with the help of blockchain technologies.
Name and Role: Maria Patrascoiu, Co-Founder and CEO of Zanumi
What the company does: Zanumi is a financial intelligence company that offers business automation of accounting and financial reports. Among its functions, the cloud-based platform allows its users to customize their reports and automate annual budget preparations.
Name and Role: Chryssi Chorafa, Founder and CEO of StarLiX
Vertical: Tokenized Payments
What the company does: StartLiX is a digital cloud-based platform for digital compliance and tokenized payments. StarLiX aims for efficient low-cost cross-border payments, reduced compliance and operational costs. The company integrates KYC/AML (Know You Customer and Anti Money Laundering) regulatory processes for all parties involved that enable it to achieve higher regulatory standards.
Name and Role: Efi Pylarinou, Founder of Efi Pylarinou Advisory
Vertical: Fintech, Blockchain
What the company does: Efi provides independent advisory services in the field of Fintech and Blockchain with a focus on Capital Markets and Wealth and Asset Management transformations. Ms. Pylarinou holds a PhD in Finance and is an international speaker with an active online presence.
Name and Role: Ioanna Stanegloudi, Co-Founder and CRO of Finclude (fka. Verge.Capital)
Vertical: Retail Credit
What the company does: Finclude is a fintech startup that aggregates and interprets transactional data for better credit decisions. The platform is available to both individuals and financial institutions within the EU, allowing users to get fair access to credit based on financial and transactional behavior rather than on past credit events.