Our client had just received $1.5M in pre-seed funding and needed to hire their first-ever Head of Product to stand up an MVP in an aggressive timeline. As employee number 4 and a 1-person Product Management team, they would be required to establish the Product Management function and team post launch.
The ability to sell, run meetings (with potential investors and clients by themselves), and pitch the value proposition appropriately was paramount for success in this role.
Uplinq is a pre-Series A start-up based in Toronto. The Founder’s track record includes four previous start-ups and two successful exits.
Our client is determined to provide small business owners with every opportunity for success by disrupting how lenders make credit decisions. Once completed, this product will be a B2B SaaS platform for banks and financial institutions to evaluate the creditworthiness and predict the financial performance of SMBs based on Machine Learning models.
For this hire to be successful, previous experience as a Product Manager who had developed and shipped a finance data product, that is in market today, was essential. They also needed ample industry knowledge of tech categories such as fintech, data, alternative data, credit risk, credit scores, accounting systems, lending systems, and decisioning systems.
As with all Pre-Series A, Founder led organizations, the chosen hire needed to be comfortable in a start-up environment and dedicated to being hands-on as well as applying a strategic lens to everything they do. Outstanding verbal communication skills with the ability to sell without intentionally selling were considered strong assets.
This candidate has over 15 years of Fintech experience, 8 years as a small business lender as well as 6 years as a Product Management leader for 2 Fortune500 financial institutions/lenders (both were target companies for the client).
Prior to joining Uplinq, they were focused on Open Banking, affordability and inclusion, and Consent Management solutions. They also had worked on advisory projects for Buy Now Pay Later FinTechs. Additionally, they served as an advisor/consultant for North Americans FinTech startups.
Previously, they had worked on New Product Initiatives where their time was primarily spent on owning the development of Machine Learning-based solutions for lenders to identify propensity of default, digital analytics tools to optimize their targeting and marketing, and Open Banking systems for smarter routing.
Their experience also included 6 years at a Big Five which gave them insight into lending, commercial account management, and dealing primarily with SMBs.
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