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The 2016 Fintech Finance 35: Vladislav Solodkiy

No. 25

  • By Peter Vasiliev

25. Vladislav Solodkiy
Managing Partner
Life.SREDA
Last year: 25

Venture capital firm Life.SREDA started out in 2012 as part of Moscow’s LIFE Financial Group, where Vladislav Solodkiy was vice president of marketing. He raised two funds totaling $140 million and invested early in digital banks like Fidor, Moven, and Simple. The $117 million acquisition of Portland, Oregon–based Simple by Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria in 2014 was a landmark in fintech and a decision point for Solodkiy. Because his Moscow base made it difficult for him to be in close touch with burgeoning centers of innovation, particularly in Asia, he moved Life.SREDA to Singapore in May 2015. He notes that while global fintech investments hit record highs of $21 billion in 2015 and $12.7 billion in the first half of 2016, “Asia became No. 1,” ahead of the U.S. and Europe. Although much of the Asian money is flowing from China, which Solodkiy says poses “a challenge to Japan, South Korea, and Singapore” in growing their ecosystems, he is doing his part to boost the numbers. Over the past year Life.SREDA has invested in six companies, including Philippines-based Ayannah Information Solutions, a digital commerce and payments service targeted to the unbanked, and Singapore’s Fastacash, a payment system for social and messaging networks. The 33-year-old Solodkiy, who churns out semiannual “Money of the Future” research reports that run to hundreds of pages, is pushing other levers. Envisioning modernized banking infrastructures based on open architectures and application programming interfaces, Solodkiy is promoting a concept he calls bank-as-a-service (BaaS), a platform on which incumbents and upstarts can collaborate, innovate and operate efficiently at scale, even overcoming cross-border regulatory complications. “Asia has a unique opportunity to surprise the world through creation of the first full-stack fintech bank,” he says. Meanwhile, Solodkiy has assumed the role of “partner-visionary” in the €100 million ($110 million) Banking on Blockchain Fund announced in April by digital banking veterans David Brear, Simon Taylor, and others associated with recently formed London consulting firm Eleven FS Group. “Blockchain will play a crucial role for fintech development in underbanked countries,” Solodkiy predicts.


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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