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Monzo’s CFO set to depart startup for crypto exchange

Exclusive: Monzo's Alwyn Jones is leaving after 2 years, putting the fintech in the market for a new CFO alongside Revolut and Starling.

By Isabel Woodford

London digital-bank Monzo has seen the departure of another top-level executive, with its chief finance officer stepping down after two years, the company confirmed to Sifted.

Alwyn Jones is now set to serve out his six-month notice period at the bank while Monzo looks for a replacement.

Jones is the latest in the series of executives to leave Monzo following a major reshuffle in its top ranks over the last year, including the appointment of a new chief executive during the UK’s first Covid-19 lockdown.

He is leaving to join cryptocurrency exchange Luno, Sifted heard, having joined from Barclays in September 2018.

New leadership in Monzo’s finance department comes as the company is fighting to prove it can reach profitability.

Monzo had a difficult period over the pandemic, including a valuation cut and a challenging set of financial results from 2019. Lending has been a particularly sore spot for the bank, warning it could lose up to 7% of the total it lent out in 2019 (including overdrafts).

Still, the company looks intent on turning things around. It recently raised another £50m from investors, and now manages over £3bn in deposit across 5m customers.

Revenues are also now up 30% on pre-pandemic levels, internal sources say, partly thanks to good uptake for its premium products.

The fintech exodus

Jones is not the first fintech executive to jump ship to join the blossoming cryptocurrency space.

Last year, Starling cofounder Julian Sawyer left to join cryptocurrency exchange Gemini, before recently joining rival Bitstamp as chief executive. Meanwhile, Monzo’s marketing manager Russel Smith left Monzo to join Blockfi.

Crypto and blockchain have also attracted top financiers from Wall Street in the US, with mixed results.

More broadly, Monzo will now have to join the competitive market for a CFO, with Revolut and Starling also on the hunt for full-time replacements.

Commenting on Jones’ departure, Monzo’s CEO TS Anil said: “I want to say a huge thank you to Alwyn for everything he’s done here at Monzo…We wish him all the best!”

For his part, Jones told Sifted in a statement:

“I’ve loved being part of the Monzo journey… There’s a huge opportunity ahead, but it’s the right time for me personally to take on a new challenge at an earlier scale-up stage in an area that I’m really excited about.”

Jones took over as CFO from Monzo cofounder Gary Dolman. Dolman left to join Antler as a VC after leading Monzo for 4 years, leading its journey to becoming a bank.

Isabel Woodford is Sifted’s fintech correspondent. She tweets from @i_woodford and coauthors Sifted’ s weekly fintech newsletter.

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Paul
Paul

Monzo RIP