Speakers: Tech Pavilion

Future of Finance 2018


Our speakers bring experience, diversity and multidisciplinary perspectives to the table—just what you need to start thinking in bold new ways.

Read and watch highlights from some of our key speakers here.

Session 1.C - FinFoward: Crafting New Partnerships in the Financial Sector

Jorge Ruiz


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Jorge is the Founder and CEO of FinConecta, the first global interconnected financial network, composed by Financial Institutions and fintechs from around the world.Prior to FinConecta he worked at Citigroup for 18 years, where he led their efforts to become a global leader in the fintech industry by defining a business transformation strategy, launching the first global virtual accelerator, hosting 16 innovation programs and implementing multiple business solutions worldwide.Jorge has also founded and led businesses in the investment, insurance, and retail industries. He is a founding member of Challenge me now a social network dedicated to personal achievement while helping charity organizations raise funds and a co-author of the Fintech Book.Jorge holds a degree in Finance from the University of Texas, and has been recently selected as an Endeavor Entrepreneur.

Session 2.C - Cybersecurity

Rhett Oudkerk Pool

CEO and Founder Kahuna Managing Security

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Rhett A. Oudkerk Pool is an IT entrepreneur. He founded Kahuna Managing Security 21 years ago, one of the first IT outsourcing firms in the Netherlands. Kahuna Services customers in a diverse range of sectors, including the financial sector, and operates out of offices in Netherlands, Belgium, and Spain. Rhett recently co-founded EOS Amsterdam, a blockchain specialist firm.

Session 3.C - Inclusive Partnerships and the Governance of Innovation

Prof. Erik P.M. Vermeulen

Senior Council Corporate Signify (Philips Lighting)

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Erik P.M. Vermeulen is a Professor of Business and Financial Law at Tilburg University and Tilburg Law and Economics Center in the Netherlands. He is also Senior Counsel Corporate at Signify (a technology company, formerly known as Philips Lighting).

Erik can be best-described as a “global futurist.” He has a particular interest in how new technologies (such as artificial intelligence, blockchain and robotics) are affecting business, government, and education.

He recently co-founded Governance Tomorrow, a platform to better understand the digital world. The platform focuses, in particular, on how everyone is obliged to re-examine all aspects of what they are doing. The aim of the platform? To develop strategies that enable governments, large corporations, start-ups, and other organizations to make better choices in this new world.

Erik’s thought-provoking and innovative views have attracted international attention. He regularly serves as an expert advisor to international organizations, such as the European Commission, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the United Nations, the World Bank, and national and local governments around the world.

He is also a board/advisory member of several companies/organizations, including a healthcare provider in the Netherlands, several law firms, and start-ups. Erik has appeared in numerous conferences as a featured or keynote speaker. He is a writer and has a blog at medium.com/@erikpmvermeulen. He shares insights and ideas about how the digital world is changing the way we live, work and play.

Nika Kurdiani

Deputy CEO TBC Bank

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Nika has more than fifteen years of experience in the banking industry, including five years at UniCredit Group in Austria, Turkey and Kazakhstan. Immediately before joining TBC Bank in 2014, Nika was Managing Director at Kaspi Bank, a leading retail bank in Kazakhstan.

Prior to obtaining his MBA degree in 2007, he served as head of the retail banking division of Bank Republic Georgia, Société Générale Group, and also held several positions at Bank of Georgia between 2003 and 2006. He has expertise in post-acquisition integration and restructuring, as well as retail and SME banking.

Between 2008 and 2010, Nika held the position of senior sales support expert at the CEE retail division of Bank Austria, UniCredit Group, responsible for Turkey, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Serbia. Between 2010 and 2013, he was head of the retail division of ATF Bank, UniCredit Group in Kazakhstan.

Currently at TBC, Nika is overlooking MSME Banking, Marketing and PR, CSR, TBC Bank’s subsidiary in Azerbaijan and TBC Leasing, and the NeoBank Space.

Nika obtained his MBA from IE Business School in 2007. He also holds an MSc in International Economics from the Georgian Technical University, and completed his BBA studies at Ruhr University Bochum in Germany and the Caucasus School of Business.

Jack Ngare

Managing Director Finserve Africa

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Jack holds a Master’s Degree from Harvard University, an MSC in Advanced Computer Science (Distinction) and BSC in Computer Science from the University of Leicester. He also holds a Graduate Diploma in Strategic Management from Harvard University, Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) and is a Certified Information Security Manager (CISM).

He previously worked for British Telecom (Global Services) with assignments in UK, Saudi Arabia, Peru and a joint venture with NTT Docomo in Japan. He subsequently worked at Stanbic Bank and NIC Bank (Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania). Jack has in depth experience in management, the telco industry, mobile financial services and emerging technology risks and security.