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The 2015 Fintech Finance 35: Vladislav Solodkiy, Life.SREDA

No. 25

Vladislav Solodkiy
Chief Executive Officer and Managing Partner

Venture capitalists who have scoured the beaten paths of North American and European fintech are increasingly opening up to opportunities in Asia. Vladislav Solodkiy has been eyeing that territory since 2012, when, as vice president of marketing at Moscow-based LIFE Financial Group, he launched Life.SREDA. The firm’s first fund, Life.SREDA I, invested $40 million in 13 start-ups, including mobile-oriented banks Rocketbank, in Russia, and Moven and Simple, in the U.S., the last acquired in 2014 by Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (see Jay Reinemann, No. 14). The $100 million Life.SREDA II fund, announced in November 2014, is explicitly Asian — a point underscored in May, when the firm relocated to Singapore, invested in remittance company Fastacash and opened an accelerator program, InspirAsia. Solodkiy found that he had no problem managing investments in Germany, the U.S. or other points west from his Moscow base but that Asia was impractical without an on-the-ground presence. He concluded that “Singapore is the best place in the world for financial innovation,” in part because the local banking community and telecommunications infrastructure are leading-edge and the government is supporting development of a fintech ecosystem. (Another plus: “There are no traffic jams.”) The 32-year-old’s view of financial innovation’s historical sweep: “Seven years ago everybody talked about the branch of the future; five years ago it was omni-channel distribution; and three years ago the fintech hype started. But there are a lot of other trendy ideas in the air: IoT [Internet of Things], O2O [online-to-office e-commerce], big data, etc. Previously, fintech was about retail clients; now services for small and medium-size enterprises are growing faster. Fintech started as a fancy game for hipsters and geeks, but now the biggest challenge is fintech for the unbanked.”

The 2015 Fintech Finance 35

1. James Robinson III
& James Robinson IV
RRE Ventures
2. Jane Gladstone
Evercore Partners
3. Matthew Harris
Bain Capital Ventures
4. Steven McLaughlin
Financial Technology Partners
5. Jonathan Korngold
General Atlantic
6. Richard Garman &
Brad Bernstein
FTV Capital
7. Amy Nauiokas & Sean Park
Anthemis Group
8. Thomas Jessop
Goldman Sachs Group
9. Meyer (Micky) Malka
Ribbit Capital
10. Hans Morris
Nyca Partners
11. Maria Gotsch
Partnership Fund for New York City
12. Marc Andreessen
Andreessen Horowitz
13. Barry Silbert
Digital Currency Group
14. Jay Reinemann
Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria
15. Mariano Belinky
Santander InnoVentures
16. François Robinet
AXA Strategic Ventures
17. Vanessa Colella
Citi Ventures
18. Alan Freudenstein & Gregory Grimaldi
Credit Suisse
19. Justin Brownhill & Neil DeSena
SenaHill Partners
20. Rodger Voorhies
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
21. Michael Schlein
Accion International
22. Kenneth Marlin
Marlin & Associates
23. Rumi Morales
CME Ventures
24. Mark Beeston
Illuminate Financial Management
25. Vladislav Solodkiy
26. Fabian Vandenreydt
Innotribe SWIFT
27. Derek White
28. Alex Batlin
29. Jeffrey Greenberg
& Vincenzo
La Ruffa
Aquiline Capital Partners
30. P. Howard Edelstein
REDI Holdings
31. Nektarios Liolios
Startupbootcamp FinTech
32. Roy Bahat
Bloomberg Beta
33. Andrew McCormack
Valar Ventures
34. Lawrence Wintermeyer
Innovate Finance
35. Janos Barberis
FinTech Hong Kong

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