Inspiring Women in Fintech: Interview with Amélie Arras

Amélie Arras, Marketing Director at Zumo, discusses travels via Bitcoin, superb jugglers, mentorship programmes and more.

The UK’s fintech industry is enjoying a great time at present with plenty of investment, new companies, fresh ideas and constant activity.

According to industry body Innovate Finance, fintech investment exceeded $11.6 billion (£8.5 billion) in 2021 – representing a 217% increase from 2020. It’s a good place to be and there are plenty of inspiring women in the industry who drive such phenomenal growth.

Amélie Arras, Marketing Director at Zumo

In our first fintech interview of 2022 we spoke with Amélie Arras, Marketing Director at Zumo.

She joined Zumo in 2020 as its new Marketing Director to help drive awareness of, and accessibility to, crypto. She has a rather unique background in the fintech and financial services sectors. Many know her as the first woman to travel the world using only Bitcoin, demonstrating first-hand the real-life challenges of using an emerging payment method as well as the power of communities.

How and where did you start your career in fintech?

I’ve been thrown in the deep end – twice! Once in fintech when I’d just finished university and was asked to put together a bid for a branding and marketing strategy for what’s now AEVI. And then in crypto, when I won the 2017 Money 20/20 Payments Race, travelling some 2,300 miles across America paying only in Bitcoin. Never looked back.

Are there any women in tech (or fintech) that have particularly inspired you?

There are three hugely inspirational women, who I’m lucky to have as colleagues at Zumo. Devina Paul is the CFO, and also the founder of Galvanise Capital. I’m amazed by how she juggles everything – as a founder, a CFO and a mum – but still always has time to support those around her.

Dagmara Aldridge is the COO at Zumo, taking on leads and delivering super complex projects with strength and empathy for everyone involved, whilst also championing mental health in the workplace.

And Kirsteen Harrison, Zumo’s environmental and sustainability adviser, who has delved into the complex world of cryptocurrencies and developed methodologies for the industry to decarbonise itself.

What’s the most pressing issue for women in fintech today?

Not from my own experience but from discussions with friends who are founders, access to capital remains challenging and must be addressed urgently.

What advice would you give to women looking to get into fintech?

To jump right in! It’s an exciting industry that’s all about innovation and collaboration. It really is open and dynamic.

And don’t hesitate to ask for help. Look for mentorship programmes – you’ll always find someone in the industry who will help you in your journey and career.

How do you think fintech solutions can help advance women’s financial health?

Fintechs have done a brilliant job of considering women’s needs when designing apps to access financial products. From understanding budgets, to planning for retirement, to investing in stocks and cryptocurrencies. It’s improving but there’s still a way to go to ensure money and financial wellness isn’t a taboo or boring topic. I think educating everyone at a younger age is required.

Check out the previous fintech interview with Zahra Shah, Co-Founder, Non-Executive Director and Investor at privacy and consent management platform Seers, here.

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