Founded in 2010, Marqeta has re-engineered how payment cards, virtual cards, and mobile authorization products should be developed and deployed. The Marqeta Platform, built from the ground up with no legacy infrastructure, provides the world’s first fully documented, open API issuer processor platform. Adopters of The Marqeta Platform include leading financial services, e-commerce, retail, and social media brands.
Marqeta offers developer-friendly solutions to meet the ever-evolving demands of the payments market: DELIVERY, LEND, DISBURSE, EXPENSE, and VIRTUAL. Each of these solutions includes a sophisticated set of controls and configurations that are designed to meet the needs of on-demand service companies, alternative lenders, as well as those looking for payouts for 1099 workers, flexible expense management, and scalable, secure virtual card transactions.
Marqeta's VP of business development Salman Syed explains that for disruption to happen in alternative lending, someone, like Marqeta, must power that disruption.
The vendor intends to challenge well-tenured heavyweights occupying the card-issuer processor side of the payments industry with its modern, built-from-scratch core processing engine.
To gain some insight into Marqeta, and the fast paced online lending sector, Crowdfund Insider posed a Q&A to Candace Sjogren Head of Alternative Lending at Marqeta.
When Visa opened its own platform to developers in 2016 it was a signal they were serious about open API platform methodologies. To companies like Marqeta, this matters for a few reasons.
Marqeta is one of those companies that has been behind the scenes enabling businesses to process credit and debit card payments, as well as issue their own.
As the only core issuer processing system that is delivered through an open API, Marqeta clearly checks that box by doing for issuer processing what AWS has done for cloud computing services.
Innovation needs to speak for itself. It’s about looking at the world as it is and figuring out what else can be done — what else can be better.
The Fintech 250 is a list created by CB Insights recognizing the 250 top private companies changing the face of financial services around the world.
"The Marqeta culture is founded on innovation, ideas, delivery, and a strong motivation to stay ahead of the game."
– Jason Gardner, Founder and CEO
Jason is a serial entrepreneur with a deep love of technology and a decidedly untraditional background. He grew up on the New Jersey shore where he had numerous businesses that included making and selling tie-dyed T-shirts. He was a G.O.at Club Med in Paradise Island, Bahamas and a constituent liaison for Senator John McCain in Arizona, primarily working as a the contact between McCain’s constituents and the Armed Services and IRS. After attending Arizona State University Jason made it to California where he began to pursue his passion for technology.
He held various sales management jobs with some of the Bay Area’s leading technology and consulting companies before founding Vertical Think, a IT management company that worked with start-ups and larger organizations to shorten time to market and increase return on investment (ROI) for information technology projects.
In 2004, he co-founded and served as President of PropertyBridge, which became the leading rent and lease-related payment platform for multifamily real estate. PropertyBridge gave renters multiple options for paying their rent and simplified the handling and reconciliation processes for property managers. MoneyGram International (MGI) acquired PropertyBridge and Jason became a vice president and member of the executive team.
While having dinner in San Francisco, Jason and a friend discussed how to personally manage all their “daily deal” paper coupons. He had an epiphany about how this could be handled with a card that could hold multiple balances and could authorize the right balance for the right merchant when swiped. Marqeta was founded in 2010 as the world’s first fully documented, open API issuer processor platform, built from the ground up with no legacy infrastructure to solve this problem and many more. Today, the Marqeta Platform has been designed and engineered using the best open-source technologies available to bring the most modern of platforms to many of the most well known businesses in the world.
Jason earned his BA in Political Science from Arizona State University.
"The future of commerce will always have untold tangents, but one focal point: payments. We’re helping our customers accelerate bringing their vision of the future to market."
– Omri Dahan, Chief Revenue Officer
Omri is a serial entrepreneur with a long track record of turning transformational ideas into real businesses. Before joining Marqeta, Omri was CEO of “cleantech” innovator TerraFusion, where he led a turnaround and overhauled its brand, sales function and distribution network. Previously, Omri spent seven years at the Trium Group, a boutique management consulting firm that advised Fortune 100 executive teams in the sectors of financial services, consumer products, retail and telecom. Omri founded and led Trium's New York practice, where he developed over $20 million of revenue and became the first person at the firm promoted to partner.
Omri's earlier ventures included ground-floor stints at The Republic of Tea (sold to Clearly Canadian), a division of Calvert Group, and OneBody.com, whose first-ever wellness discount program became BlueShield's "Lifepath" product. He also spent a summer on President Clinton's White House Staff, advising Dr. Laura Tyson while she was Chair of the Council of Economic Advisors.
Omri holds a BS from the University of California at Berkeley and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
"Innovation needs to speak for itself. It’s about looking at the world as it is and figuring out what else can be done — what else can be better. I don’t want to spend my time taking something someone else built and tweaking it or maintaining it. I want to create something new that solves a problem for someone where there’s significant new value on the other side. At Marqeta, I am grateful that we have been able to invent some really valuable products."
– Tony Ford, Chief Technology Officer
Tony is a technology and product leader with more than 15 years of experience in building large-scale Internet applications and infrastructure. Tony’s passion is in leading and growing teams to build products that have a real impact for users.
Prior to joining Marqeta, Tony spent several years building web applications and community-driven video game tools for IGN Entertainment and brands such as Rotten Tomatoes. Under Tony's leadership, the team at IGN built a modern, scalable, service-oriented platform and mobile team. Tony’s specialties include open source software, distributed computing, web development, service-oriented architecture (SOA), and agile and lean product development.
"The payments industry is a highly regulated one – state and federal laws, plus multiple regulatory bodies – and we are here to help Marqeta customers understand and address the regulatory hurdles they’re likely to face."
– Gizelle Barany, General Counsel
Gizelle is a seasoned financial services and regulatory attorney with over 10 years of experience in the prepaid card industry. Before she joined Marqeta, Gizelle served as Senior Corporate Counsel for Blackhawk Network, Inc., an early leader in the prepaid card industry, where she developed strategic, practical and creative legal solutions to a variety of complex regulatory, compliance and commercial challenges. She substantially helped advance Blackhawk Network’s competitive advantage in open-loop, prepaid cards.
Additionally, Gizelle collaborated closely with lobbyists on card-related issues to present an industry perspective to members of Congress and federal regulators, and prepared comment letters on proposed legislation and regulation. She was Blackhawk Network’s board designee to the Network Branded Card Association (NBPCA), where she participated as a strategic and technical contributor to the NBPCA board and executive committee. Gizelle has presented on prepaid regulatory and compliance issues at several industry conferences.
Gizelle's early legal career included associate positions at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, LLP & Affiliates, Bay Venture Counsel, LLP, and GATX Ventures, Inc.
Gizelle received her BA and her JD from U.C. Berkeley.
"Marqeta brings two things to our clients: speed and scale."
– Dave Matter, Chief Product Officer
Dave is a product and engineering professional whose specialty is designing, architecting and productizing large-scale financial technology platforms to create paradigm-shifting products operating at the intersection of business development, engineering and operations. Dave has led teams on projects to marry financial and technological complexity with elegant and simple user interfaces and APIs.
Dave started his career at ING DIRECT (now CapitalOne 360), where he was instrumental in creating a fully automated, direct-to-consumer loan origination platform. From ING, Dave went to Citadel Investment Group, where he led the development and engineering of an asset management platform, which was sold and integrated into Quicken Loans through a joint venture. Prior to joining Marqeta and relocating from New York City, Dave managed the engineering and product development for a stealth mode, higher education and consumer finance company.
A native of Minnesota, Dave received his BS in Business Computer Information Systems from St. Cloud State University.
"Exceptional people are drawn to Marqeta to be a part of something truly unique: Redefining the payments industry. You can’t do that anywhere else."
– Penny DeFrank, VP of People
Penny leads Marqeta’s people and organizational strategy. She brings a fresh approach to shaping talent and cultural programs that optimize the career experience for the Marqeta team and enable the business to scale during a very high-growth phase of the company's evolution.
Penny has enjoyed a diverse career across financial services, professional services, e-commerce and technology, with a long early-career stint at CIGNA followed by ten years at McKinsey & Company, where she led all non-consulting operations across the 4 West Coast offices. Penny then focused on building the HR function at three early stage, VC backed technology firms and, just prior to Marqeta, spent time at digital banking technology company Monitise, Inc.
Penny holds a BS in Information Systems Management and a Master’s in Human Resources and Organization Development, both from the University of San Francisco.
"Marqeta is on its way to becoming one of the most impactful fintech companies by combining relentless product innovation, operational scale, and unique business models that simplify and deliver tremendous value to customers in a highly complex and regulated ecosystem."
– Sunil Singh, VP of Operations
Sunil is an industry leader with two decades of experience leading strategy, product management, marketing, and driving operational scale and revenue growth for fintech and technology companies. Sunil joined Marqeta from Karmic Labs, a fintech start up where he was instrumental in securing a multi-million-dollar commercial partnership with a Fortune 50 client and played a key role in its series B funding. Before Karmic, he ran the emerging payments business unit at Blackhawk Network (HAWK), growing that business to over $1B in annual payment volume. Sunil has also held several leadership roles at high growth startups – AccountNow (acquired by GreenDot, GDOT), QuinStreet (QNST), as well as some of the leading enterprise software companies (Oracle, EMC, and HP).
Sunil has a BS in Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering from Jadavpur University in India and an MBA, Summa Cum Laude from Babson College, where he was also a research fellow at the Arthur M. Blank center of entrepreneurship.
Sunil is a certified meditation teacher and volunteers his time for the Art of Living Foundation, teaching meditation and stress management workshops across the Bay Area.
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