Speakers at WOA 2020 Community Convention by Zoom - Per aspera ad astra!

WOA 2020 Community Convention by Zoom - Per aspera ad astra!

About the speakers

  1. Alexandros Kontopoulos

    Alexandros Kontopoulos

    Alexandros has a factoring experience of over twenty years. He is founding C.E.O of NBG Factors S.A (www.nbgfactors.gr) a 100% subsidiary of National Bank of Greece (www.nbg.gr), the oldest banking institution in Greece with over 170 years of history. He has served as Head of Business Development for Trade Finance products in National Bank of Greece (2008-2009), as Head of Factoring Division in Bank of Cyprus (Greece 2002-2008) and Senior Account Manager in ABC Factors (Greece 1997-2002). He is chairing the Board of Hellenic Factors Association (www.hellenicfactors.gr) for second term in which he has been member of the Board since 2009. He is also member of the Economics and Statistics Committee of EUF (www.euf.eu.com) and member of C-level think tank of World of Open Account Community (https://woa.community). He has lectured a number of conferences and authored various articles on Factoring. He holds a Master’s Degree on Accounting and Finance from the University of Manchester, UK and a Bachelor’s degree in Financial and Banking Management from the University of Piraeus, Greece.
  2. Andreas Bene

    Andreas Bene

    Andreas Bene is CEO of Raiffeisen Factor Bank (RFB), one of the leading factoring banks in the Austrian market. RFB is responsible for factoring within the Austrian Raiffeisen Banking Group, present across the entire country with its local Raiffeisen Banks, and achieves an annual turnover of EUR 9 bn. in purchased receivables (2019). RFB is a 100% subsidiary of Raiffeisen Bank International (RBI) and acts as Competence Center Factoring for the banking network in the CEE region where factoring solutions are offered in 13 markets. Additionally, Andreas Bene is President of the Austrian Factoring Association.
  3. Andre Casterman

    Andre Casterman

    André Casterman is an independent FinTech consultant, advising clients on financial data management, trade finance, and capital markets innovations. André spent 20+ years at SWIFT, leading various innovations in the inter-bank payments, corporate treasury, and trade finance markets. During that time he established an institutional partnership between SWIFT and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and created the first digital trade settlement instrument. He is also a Board Member of the International Trade and Forfaiting Association (ITFA) where he chairs the Fintech Committee with a focus on helping banks establish trade finance as an attractive asset class for institutional investors.
  4. Bert Van Haagen

    Bert Van Haagen

    Bert van Haagen is working for Atradius for over 28 years. Atradius is one of the leading credit insurer in the world. He held senior commercial management roles in The Netherlands, Japan and China. In his current adviser role actively involved in the field of receivables finance and its relationship with credit insurance. Helping out corporates and banks in structuring programs considering the changes in the regulatory environment. Bert is based in Amsterdam.
  5. Chantal Joosse

    Chantal Joosse

    Chantal Joosse is Business Development Director, Strategic Partnerships at Stenn International, a UK-based based provider of innovative cross-border trade finance solutions. Chantal has over 20 years of experience in helping companies grow and protect their international business. She previously held senior management roles in both Europe and the United States at global trade credit insurers Atradius and Coface. At Stenn, Chantal’s main focus is developing relationships within the global trade finance community to bring Stenn’s trade finance solutions to companies of all sizes. Chantal is based in Amsterdam.
  6. Daniel Huszar

    Daniel Huszar

    Head of Sales, Efcom Coming from the business and distribution side of Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Mr. Daniel Huszár founded his own advertising agency, then joined efcom in 2012. As Head of Sales, he supported efcom in expanding its international business, by defining a global marketing strategy. Daniel Huszár is responsible for client communication, as well as consultancy in product development. Past projects include working with Allianz Bank, KBC and Postbank. Furthermore, Mr. Huszár is a speaker at international conferences.
  7. Deepesh Patel

    Deepesh Patel

    Deepesh Patel is Director of Partnerships & Marketing at Trade Finance Global (TFG). In this role, Deepesh leads efforts in developing TFG’s brand, relationships and strategic direction in key markets, including the UK, US, Singapore, Dubai and Hong Kong. This includes TFG’s fintech platform and blockchain projects. Deepesh regularly speaks at industry events including The Telegraph’s Future of Trade & Export, BCR Consortia, Excred Commodities and FCI’s Annual Conference. Prior to TFG, Deepesh worked at Travelex where he was responsible for the cards business and the Travelex Money app in Europe, NAM, UK and Brazil. Deepesh has a Bachelor’s Degree in Natural Sciences from Durham University and is a Fellow of the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. He is a regular contributor to publications including Business Insider, Finextra, International Trade Magazine and Cryptocoinsnews. Deepesh is a co-opted Local Authority Governor of the Wyvern Federation, which has responsibility for 5 primary schools in South London.
  8. Erik Timmermans

    Erik Timmermans

    Founder of World of Open Account. Erik was Secretary General of IFG from 2005 till 2015. He played a key role in the merger between IFG and FCI on 31/12/15. Post-merger Erik was Deputy Secretary General of FCI till 31/12/2017. He started his career in the factoring industry with International Factors Belgium in 1982. In 2008 he initiated the EU Federation for Factoring & Commercial Finance (EUF) of which he was Chairman (2016-2018). In March 2018 he received both the Life Time Achievement Award at the BCR RFIx conference and the Leadership in Receivables Finance Award at the Business Money Awards Dinner.
  9. Eva Degenhart

    Eva Degenhart

    Eva is a Senior Supply Chain Finance specialist with over 20 years of banking experience in various management and expert positions at major Austrian Financial institutions. She is known for hands-on development, sales and management of different types of private and corporate banking products. Eva is shareholding partner at MHCF and heads the SCF consulting services. Being among the first to develop and introduce successfully an Approved Payables product in an Austrian bank she lead multiple roll-outs of new SCF solutions in Austria and CEE, including the structuring of complex SCF syndication deals and currently advises commercial and development banks in MENA and West Africa. She enabled SCF Strategy set-up and lead IT vendor selection projects. Eva regards knowledge as important ingredient for quality results, for both the clients and herself. She loves to innovate, continuously has an ear on what happens in the SCF community and likes to share and discuss the findings. Eva is a beknown speaker and trainer at international Supply Chain Finance conferences, writes articles and publications on the subject matter. She holds a master degree in business administration from Vienna University of Economics and Business and a CEFA diploma. In spare time her running shoes and mountain bike keep her fit, and she enjoys cooking with friends. Besides that, Eva is a passionate freerider in winter and explores the wilderness of Africa in summer.
  10. Igor Zaks

    Igor Zaks

    Igor Zaks, founder and the President of Tenzor Ltd., focusing on all aspects of working capital management and financing. Igor is a seasoned finance professional, combining experience in banking, blue chip corporate and consulting. Igor started his career in in 1990, first in consulting, and then as Finance Director for a high tech company. He subsequently moved to Citibank, initially working in project finance before setting up and running its first research department in Russia. After moving to Citibank London in 1996, Igor set up market strategy research for Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa. In 2000 Igor moved to Dell where he designed a number of innovative structures, working with credit insurers, banks and other finance providers. Igor then moved as a director to Eurohypo / Commerzbank, undertaking traditional public finance transactions as well as driving expansion into new asset classes, such as receivables, leases and export credit agencies. From 2006 to 2009 he was a Managing Partner in SCF Capital, a specialised boutique in supply chain financing and its applications. He set up Tenzor Ltd. in 2009 and is now based in Toronto, Canada
  11. John Brehcist

    John Brehcist

    John Brehcist is an acknowledged expert in the Receivables Finance world. Previously the Head of Strategy for Lloyds TSB Commercial Finance, for over ten years he has run his successful roundwindow consultancy business working with clients (from start-ups to established leaders, from emerging to developed markets) in over twenty countries, offering impartial advice and constructive support on strategy, marketing, operations, people, risk and fraud control. He has combined this with taking a range of non-exec director roles, been Director of Advocacy at FCI and is the Coordinator of the EU Federation for Factoring and Commercial Finance and since September 2019 a key member of the team at World of Open Account, WOA. John has an MA from Oxford and an MBA from Warwick. He is a well-known author, lecturer and conference presenter.
  12. John Oliver

    John Oliver

    Head of Client Management, Open Account Products Barclays Bank Plc Vice Chair, ICC United Kingdom Banking Committee. John is the Head of Client Management for Open Account with a team of 120 people, looking after 3000 clients and £4bn of limits on a global basis, the product set covers Off Balance Financing, ABL, CID and Factoring. John is a career banker having worked within various Barclays Trade and Corporate Relationship departments for 29 years, his most recent roles have included: Head of the Structuring, Execution & Delivery Team for Barclays Trade & Working Capital products on a global basis / Origination and Structuring of bespoke Trade and Working capital solutions for Investment bank clients / Head of the London Asset Based Lending Team / Head of Asset Based Lending Syndications and Distribution / Asset Based Lending Product Management. John takes an active role in the Barclays London Environmental Network with a focus on Green financing solutions and the use of Block chain technology to streamline trade across the developing world and sits on a number of global steering groups. John was an active member in Project Trado, a paper recently published by the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership.
  13. Kevin Day

    Kevin Day

    HPD Software’s CEO, Kevin Day, is committed to making the company the technology partner of choice for businesses in the global invoice discounting, supply chain finance, factoring and asset based lending markets. Kevin's history with HPD means that he truly understands the evolving issues the industry faces as well as what its clients need to grow their markets and their market share. He began his career more than 25 years ago as a software developer at HPD and has worked his way up the ranks, holding positions as a business analyst, product manager, product director, board member and COO. His first-hand experience in developing, designing and bringing HPD's software to market means that Kevin has a unique and invaluable perspective on what HPD can do to help its clients deliver better working capital finance solutions around the world. Kevin also ensures that HPD regularly works in partnership with its clients to develop new products to meet their changing needs and expectations.
  14. Maria Mogilnaya

    Maria Mogilnaya

    Dr Maria Mogilnaya is a principal banker and a lawyer in the EBRD’s Trade Facilitation Programme specialising in promoting green trade finance in the EBRD regions, with a special interest in supply chain finance and sustainable supply chains. Dr Mogilnaya is experienced in negotiating and structuring trade finance transactions in developing countries, including in Albania, Armenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, and in private sector development through innovative capacity building projects. Dr Mogilnaya holds a PhD in Banking Law and Regulation from De Montfort University (2012) and a Diploma in Jurisprudence from Saint-Petersburg State University (2004). Since 2011, Dr Mogilnaya has been working at the EBRD within its Trade Facilitation Programme. Launched in 1999, the Trade Facilitation Programme is the platform through which the EBRD provides guarantees to international confirming banks and short-term loans to selected banks and factoring companies for on-lending to local exporters, importers and distributors. The TFP currently includes over 120 partner banks in 30 countries where the EBRD invests, with limits exceeding €3 billion in total and more than 800 confirming banks worldwide.
  15. Robert Meters

    Robert Meters

    Robert Meters is the Head of Marketing and Sales, Global Business & Financial Services at SCHUMANN. He studied Business Administration and International Management at the University for Economics and Management in Essen. At SCHUMANN he is especially active in international business and in the area of financial services. He advises and takes care of customers to implement efficient credit risk management software, which provides an automated credit decision engine (DMN Decision Model and Notation, Expert system), technical interfaces to various credit rating agencies and credit insurances (API gateway with 50 partners) as well as compliance processes. The solution acts as an automated early warning and workflowmanagement system (BPMN Business Process Management and Notation) and can be fully integrated into customer IT environments for efficient, company-wide and global straight through processes. SCHUMANN enables a transformation of classic processes into efficient digital processes and secure, cost-saving implementation of legal and regulatory requirements. SCHUMANN provides leading credit risk management solutions for the financial sector with excellent references in leasing, factoring, banking and insurance sectors.
  16. Sebastian Erich

    Sebastian Erich

    Sebastian ERICH started his corporate banking career in 1990 at CREDITANSTALT in Austria. He worked in sales and risk management in Vienna and CEE before moving to Paris/France in 1998 - running corporate client business for HypoVereinsbank/France. After 2 years in Private Equity he moved back to Austria in 2007 joining Erste Group – as a corporate Banker. For 5 years he was responsible for Large Corporate Client coverage in Austria and CEE. In 2013 Sebastian was appointed as CEO in Intermarket Bank AG – the factoring subsidiary of Erste Group in Austria. Since 2017 Intermarket Bank AG has the overall strategic responsibility for Supply Chain Finance in Erste Group with a strong focus on Large and SME clients all over Erste Groups geography.
  17. Simon Featherstone

    Simon Featherstone

    Simon Featherstone, Strategic Advisor Simon is working with Blue Compass LLP on new operating and financial models for the invoice finance space, principally across the Americas and has a diverse range of experience in financial services spanning almost 30 years. Most recently, he was the Managing Director of the Business Finance division at specialist bank Shawbrook. Before joining Shawbrook, he was Global Chief Executive of Bibby Financial Services (BFS), the world’s largest non-bank invoice and trade finance business and prior to BFS, he was Managing Director of Lloyds TSB Commercial Finance and Network Director of Lloyds TSB Commercial Banking. Simon has served as CEO and subsequently Chairman of The Agricultural Mortgage Corporation (AMC) Plc and as the Deputy Chairman of the UK trade body The Asset Based Finance Association (ABFA), as well as on the Board of the global trade body, International Factors Group. He has also served as a Non-Executive Director on Bibby Distribution and Bibby Offshore Boards and currently advises a number of SME-focused businesses.
  18. Thorsten Klindworth

    Thorsten Klindworth

    In 1996 Thorsten Klindworth set up A.B.S. Global Factoring AG in Wiesbaden and is now the Chairman and still majority shareholder of the A.B.S. Global Factoring Group of companies, with operations in Germany, Austria, Scandinavia, Switzerland and Slovenia. In most of these countries the A.B.S. entities are the largest privately owned factoring companies in their markets. Thorsten has a degree in Business Administration from the University of Regensburg where he mostly focused on finance and national economics. In 2019 he got elected as a member of the Board of “BGA Bundesverband Groß-, Aussenhandel und Dienstleistung”, Berlin, a German National association representing more than 130.000 companies that are active in trade, wholesale and services.


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