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The 2016 Fintech Finance 35: Mariano Belinky

No. 15

  • By Peter Vasiliev

15. Mariano Belinky
Managing Partner
Santander InnoVentures
Last year: 15

When corporate venture capital investments hit their mark, they have a direct strategic impact on the parent’s business. Santander InnoVentures, the London-based strategic investing unit of Spain’s Banco Santander, showed how it’s done after participating in a $135 million Series E financing for Atlanta-based Kabbage in November 2015. Santander UK began working with the online lender in January to create an automated underwriting platform that delivers almost immediate decisions on small- and medium-size-business loan applications. “If you’re a small business in the U.K., it takes up to four weeks to get an answer from a bank,” says InnoVentures managing partner Mariano Belinky. “We’ve taken that to minutes. In ten minutes you have an answer.” Also in the U.K., Santander in May released a pilot app for international payments, using the blockchain technology of San Francisco–based Ripple, in which InnoVentures made a $4 million Series A investment in October 2015. “We’re making good progress with our portfolio companies in terms of adding value to them and them adding value to Santander and our clients,” says Belinky, 41, a former McKinsey & Co. principal who took charge of the venture fund five months after it was launched in July 2014 with $100 million. Some 70 percent of that original amount has been placed in 12 portfolio companies. In July of this year, Banco Santander put an additional $100 million into InnoVentures, in part to focus more on Latin America — exploring applications for financial inclusion, such as microlending and micropayments — and to make “a big push toward artificial intelligence,” says Belinky, who completed five years of doctoral studies in AI at Barcelona’s Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya in 2009. In March, InnoVentures took part in a $5 million Series A round for London-based Elliptic, which applies machine learning in blockchain monitoring and compliance, and in June it bought an undisclosed stake in Socure, a New York company that uses pattern recognition in verifying digital identities. The latter is an example of what Belinky calls a “by-the-way business model. I like when an entrepreneur comes to me and says, ‘We’ve solved X and, by the way, we are using AI.’”


The 2016 Fintech Finance 35

1. Jonathan Korngold
General Atlantic
2. Matthew Harris
Bain Capital Ventures
3. Jane Gladstone
Evercore Partners
4. James Robinson III & James
Robinson IV
RRE Ventures
5. Steven McLaughlin
Financial Technology Partners
6. Amy Nauiokas & Sean Park
Anthemis Group
7. Richard Garman &
Brad Bernstein
FTV Capital
8. Gerard
von Dohlen
Broadhaven Capital Partners
9. Darren Cohen
Goldman Sachs Group
10. Hans Morris
Nyca Partners
11. Meyer (Micky) Malka
Ribbit Capital
12. Maria Gotsch
Partnership Fund for New York City
13. Barry Silbert
Digital Currency Group
14. Jay Reinemann
Propel Venture Partners
15. Mariano Belinky
Santander InnoVentures
16. Justin Brownhill & Neil DeSena
SenaHill Partners
17. François Robinet
AXA Strategic Ventures
18. Vanessa Colella
Citi Ventures
19. Michael Schlein
Accion International
20. Kenneth Marlin
Marlin & Associates
21. Rumi Morales
CME Ventures
22. Alastair (Alex) Rampell
Andreessen Horowitz
23. Steve Gibson
Euclid Opportunities
24. Fabian Vandenreydt
SWIFT
25. Vladislav Solodkiy
Life.SREDA
26. Gardiner Garrard III
TTV Capital
27. Nektarios Liolios
Startupbootcamp Fintech
28. Lawrence Wintermeyer
Innovate Finance
29. Bina Kalola
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
30. Hyder Jaffrey
Fintech Innovation
31. Calvin Choi
AMTD Group
32. Janos Barberis
FinTech
Hong Kong
33. Jalak Jobanputra
Future Perfect Ventures
34. Sopnendu Mohanty
Monetary Authority of Singapore
35. Oskar Mielczarek
de la Miel
Rakuten
FinTech Fund

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