Τhe Banking Forum & FinTech Expo, the evolution of the annual Cyprus Banking Forum, has become the premier peer-to-peer event that brings to the spotlight professionals from the local banking arena. This year’s event welcomes established professionals from the international spectrum who will address the latest developments in the wider financial services sector and provide a commentary on today’s banking ecosystem.
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Vassilios Vrachimis is a graduate of the University of Manchester. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, a Member of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Cyprus and a CFA® Charterholder. Prior to moving to Cyprus he worked at PwC in London from 1998 to 2012. During his career he has worked on a number of international assignments and he is currently the partner in charge of PwC Cyprus’ services to the banking industry as well as a member of PwC Cyprus’ leadership team.
Governor, Central Bank of Cyprus
Constantinos Herodotou is the Governor of the Central Bank of Cyprus (CBC) and a member of the Governing Council of the European Central Bank. Previously he served as an Executive Director at the CBC’s Board of Directors (2017-2019). He also held the position of the Commissioner of Privatisations in Cyprus (2014-2017). Before moving to Cyprus in 2014, most of his career was in investment banking at UBS Investment Bank in London, where he rose through the ranks to head concurrently two sectors: Shipping for Europe, Middle East and Africa and simultaneously Infrastructure & Concessions Advisory / Project Finance for Central & Eastern Europe. He has advised governments and global conglomerates on major financial transactions and strategy, totaling a value of over €50 billion. His experience includes among others structuring and heading complex negotiations, mergers and acquisitions, project concessions, listing companies on stock exchanges (NASDAQ and NYSE), structuring and raising equity and debt, corporate and financial restructurings and project finance. Constantinos Herodotou holds an MBA from London Business School and a BSc in Economics from University College London.
Gabriel Makhlouf took up his position as Governor of the Central Bank of Ireland on 1 September 2019. He chairs the Central Bank Commission, is a member of the Governing Council of the European Central Bank, a member of the European Systemic Risk Board, and is Ireland’s Alternate Governor at the International Monetary Fund. Before joining the Central Bank Gabriel was Secretary to the New Zealand Treasury and the Government’s chief economic and financial adviser from 2011 to 2019. During his time as Secretary, he led reviews of New Zealand’s three macroeconomic pillars (monetary, financial stability and fiscal policy) and the development of a new framework for the development of economic and public policy focused on intergenerational wellbeing. In addition Gabriel was New Zealand’s Alternate Governor at the World Bank, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, Asian Development Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. He was also co-chair of the Trans-Tasman Banking Council. Previously Gabriel worked in the UK civil service where his roles ranged from policy on domestic and international tax issues through to large-scale operational delivery. He has also chaired the OECD’s Committee on Fiscal Affairs and was responsible for the UK’s Government Banking Service.
Yannis Stournaras is Professor of Economics at the University of Athens (MPhil, DPhil, Oxford University). He served as Minister of Finance (July 2012- June 2014). Since June 2014 he is Governor of the Bank of Greece and Member of the Governing Council of the European Central Bank. From February 2020 he is Chairman of the Audit Committee of the European Central Bank.
Vitas Vasiliauskas, Chairman of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania, governing the institution for his second five-year term, organises the Bank of Lithuania activities and represents it both in Lithuania and abroad. As Member of the Governing Council of the European Central Bank, Vitas Vasiliauskas, together with other members of the Council, takes decisions on the euro area monetary policy. He is also Member of the Board of Governors of the International Monetary Fund, one of the largest financial organisations in the world. The Chairman oversees the field of monetary policy that falls under the responsibility of the Monetary Policy Division of the Economics Department of the Economics and Financial Stability Service. He is also in charge of organisational management (administration) to the extent that it is implemented by the Communications Department, the International Relations Department, the Legal Division, the Internal Audit Division and the Personnel Division.
Partner & Chief Economist, Governance Creed, Dubai
Marios Maratheftis is an expert on the global economy and financial markets. Having graduated from the University of Warwick with an MSc in Economics and Finance, and a BSc in Economics, he initially worked as an econometrician in his native Cyprus and then took on the role of economist and Senior FX strategist with Standard Chartered Bank based in London. Following several years of experience in various financial markets, Marios was appointed in 2012 to the role of Chief Economist at the Standard Chartered Bank, became a Member of the Standard Chartered Global Leadership Team, and managed a team of analysts based in 13 different countries, until November 2017. During this time, he also advised the Bank’s clients, Governments, Central Bank Governors and financial services regulators, prime ministers, institutional investors and Boards of Directors amongst profile accounts. Marios has authored a number of financial articles, appearing regularly in global media and international forums as an expert on the global economy. He has lived and worked from Cyprus, London, Singapore and Dubai. Marios joined Governance Creed in 2018, as a Partner and chief economic advisor and he is a non-executive director of Hellenic Bank.
Chairman & CEO, Banco BNI Europa, Portugal
Innovative, agile and multi-award winning banking leader with over 25 years’ international financial services experience with leading blue-chip institutions across three continents in progressive leadership roles, both executive and NED, in Investment Banking, Wealth Management, general management, business development, strategy and latterly in FinTech. His value proposition is centered around enabling challenger banks to establish strategic partnerships with FinTechs to create profitable financial products using an ‘open architecture model.’ Expert in driving digital banking transformations both in terms of creating ‘best in class’ digital customer experiences, and transforming key internal support functions to fully align with the overall digital transformation programs of financial institutions.
Senior Partner, CITR, Cyprus / Romania
Alina Zechiu is Senior Partner in CITR Cyprus Ltd. She is a licensed Insolvency Practitioner and member of Insol Europe. Before joining CITR, Alina worked for a multinational audit & consultancy company for more than a decade, as a Director of the Business Restructuring division, being specialized in restructuring and bankruptcy proceedings. She has relevant experience in debt recoveries, as she previously held the position of Large Corporate & Insolvency Director in a local debt recovery company. During this period, she acquired a thorough understanding of the Cypriot market and its specific recovery tools.
Deputy CEO, Bank of Cyprus
Dr. Charis Pouangare is Deputy CEO of the Bank and heads the Business Banking Division comprising of: the Retail Banking Division, the Small Medium Enterprise (SME) Banking Division, the Corporate Banking Division, the International Banking (IB) Division, the Digital Channels, Corporate Affairs Division, and Innovation & Entrepreneurship Centre. He has the duty of defining the strategy of all of the aforementioned Divisions under his responsibility in order to achieve the strategic objectives of the Group. His aim is to manage and develop customer engagement so as to increase the Bank’s market share and also develop and provide products and services that meet today’s customers’ needs. Prior to joining the Bank of Cyprus Group, Dr. Charis Pouangare spent two years in Boston and Tokyo as a Civil Engineer Consultant. The academic credentials of Dr. Charis Pouangare include a Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD) and a Master of Science (MSc) in Civil Engineering both from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) as well as a Diploma in Civil Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens in Greece. He is Chairman of the Board of IDEA Innovation Centre and a Member of the Board of Directors of BOC Oncology Centre, the Cyprus Cancer Research Institute, and member of the Board of Cyprus Employers & Industrialists Federation (OEB).
Phivos Stasopoulos was born in 1967 in Cyprus. He has extensive experience in the accounting and banking industries. After graduating from the University of Manchester with a B.A. in Accounting, Finance and Econometrics, he joined KPMG in the UK, where he qualified as a Chartered Accountant. He returned to Cyprus to join Bank of Cyprus as Head of Debt Recovery. After serving in various posts, he became General Manager as Head of Corporate Banking. He left the Bank at the end of 2013 and for a period of almost 2 years he was providing financial advice to reputable Cyprus companies, primarily for debt restructuring. He is a Fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW). He joined Hellenic Bank in April 2016 where he held the position of General Manager Business Division and was responsible for the Bank’s Corporate and SME portfolio. Since August 2021, he holds the position of Chief Banking Officer, responsible for the whole spectrum of Customer related activities and products (Corporate, SME, Retail, International ,Shipping, Products)
Konstantinos Koutentakis has 34 years of working experience in Marketing, Sales, HR and Business Development - mainly in the Consumer Goods, Consulting and Banking Sector. He worked for the L’ OREAL Group in France and Greece for 12 years, with last position held as General Manager for LANCOME in Greece. He then joined the global organizational consulting company, KORN FERRY in Greece, as a Senior Associate for 2 years. He entered the Alpha Bank Group in 2002, initially working for Alpha Mutual Funds and in 2007, for Alpha Bank S.A., holding managerial positions in the Branch Network, Retail Strategy Development and Personal Banking and Investment Services. He was appointed Managing Director of Alpha Bank Cyprus Ltd in April 2017 and Chairman of the Association of Cyprus Banks in September 2022. Konstantinos Koutentakis holds a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering and an M.Sc. in Engineering Economic Systems both from Stanford University, Palo Alto, USA. He also holds an MBA from INSEAD Business School, Fontainebleau, France.
Haris Hambakis joined Eurobank Cyprus in 2007 and currently holds the position of Senior General Manager. He also holds the position of Head of Private Banking New Business Development & Strategic Transformation of Eurobank Group, since June 2019. He started his career in the Corporate Banking Division of Laiki Bank in Greece, where he worked for two years. Upon his return to Cyprus, in 1996, he continued his career with Laiki Group where he served in various positions, including Head of Global Capital Markets, Project Manager for the establishment of a subsidiary Bank in Australia, Project Manager for the acquisition of a Bank in Serbia and its post-acquisition restructuring, Manager in Private Banking and Director Wealth Management, a position he held until his move to Eurobank Cyprus. Mr. Hambakis holds a BSc in Economics from University College London and an MSc in Shipping, Trade and Finance from City Business School. He is also registered in the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission’s Public Register of Registered Persons as holder of the Advanced Certification.
Aristidis Vourakis is a seasoned international banker with over a 20 year career including an 18 year stint with JPMorgan in London and 3 years in Lebanon as Deputy CEO of Bank Audi Group. His track-record includes a series of successful complex transactions involving financial institutions in Greece, North Africa, the Middle East, Central Eastern Europe and Russia, and a far reaching reorganization of the Bank Audi Group network of banks. As Managing Director in charge of JP Morgan’s Financial Institutions Investment Banking in CEEMEA, he led successful transactions across Europe assisting numerous banks with implementing their regional growth initiatives and strengthening their capital structure. During his time at JP Morgan, he also supported a number of Greek issuers, including the Hellenic Republic itself, accessing equity and debt capital markets following the debt restructuring of 2012. At Bank Audi Group he led an extensive reorganisation involving capital raising and reallocation across the group, targeted expansion initiatives, and strengthening the management team and control functions. Aristidis Vourakis holds an M.Sc. in Accounting and Finance with distinction from the London School of Economics and a B.Sc. in Banking and Financial Management from the University of Piraeus.
Dr Edwin van der Ouderaa leads Accenture’s Song Sales and Service practice and Digital Banking worldwide. He is a Computer Science Engineer, holds a PhD in Information Theory and an MBA. He founded a software company with venture-capital and served as its CEO until 1995. Joining Accenture since, he led several global banking accounts and one of Europe’s largest Banking IT Transformational Outsourcing programs, Accenture’s Payments practice and its UKI Insurance practice. In 2010-11 he chaired the Basel III Liquidity kick-off sessions, one of the three streams besides Capital Adequacy and Macro-Prudential Governance, advising the BIS, Basel Committee and G20/FSB. He then created Accenture’s global FS Digital, Data and Analytics practice, leading this till 2020. He founded Accenture’s Digital Decoupling practice. He is involved in digital transformations at numerous large banks across the world. He built several Digital banks and assisted many FinTechs.
Philip Rowan leads the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance’s initiatives on regulatory innovation – regulatory responses to financial innovation. He works with financial regulators, central banks, governments and other development partners in their efforts to create informed regulatory environments for financial innovation. He has a particular focus on developing and emerging markets, and is a leading authority on regulatory sandboxes and Innovation Offices. In his previous role as the International Lead at the UK Financial Conduct Authority’s innovation office, he closely engaged with financial services regulators, governments and industry in their efforts to promote innovation in financial services, including in developing markets.
Vanja Tokic has been Group AA&AI Community Lead & Agile Coach at Raiffeisen Bank International since 2018, where he has been employed since 2009 and held various leadership positions in IT. He currently supports scaling of Advanced Analytics & AI as agile coach and is responsible for agile innovations, development of working methods and team culture. Vanja also leads a group-wide AA&AI Community, giving data scientists and experts across the RBI Group an opportunity to share experiences, collaborate and learn. Finally, he supports senior management and team leaders with adoption of agility and is responsible for trainings and coaching of teams within the RBI Group.
After a degree in Economy at Bocconi University and a Master in Marketing at ESCP Europe, Elena Lavezzi worked as Marketing Manager at Uber for 4 years where she launched the Italian market before moving to India to support the growth of the local market. She joined the FinTech industry in 2017, up to becoming the Director, Go-To-Market Retail Europe at Circle and, in 2019 joined Revolut as a Head of Southern Europe, with the goal of creating and managing local teams and lead the growth in the region.
Charis Florides is the Directory of Business Consulting Services Unit of Logicom Solutions, helping clients to define technology related strategies, build frameworks and safeguard their business by proactively identifying and assessing areas threatening information assets and their operations. He has over 14 years of experience in different areas of Information Technology, including designing and delivering transformation projects and highly complex Information Security architectures, cybersecurity strategies and frameworks. Previously, he served as Head of IT Audit at a major Financial Institution in Cyprus. Charis holds an MSc in Information Security from Royal Holloway University of London, is CISSP and OSCP certified and a Cyprus Certified Information Security Professionals (ISC2) Chapter Board Member.
Commercial Manager, eBOS Technologies Ltd, Cyprus
Panos Kyriakides is a business professional with more than twenty years of experience in the Financial and Banking sector. Throughout the course of his career, he has gained valuable insights in communicating with people at all levels and building and maintaining sound business relationship with customers and stakeholders. He has experience in compliance and due diligence of clients, analyzing and understanding clients’ needs, promoting business products and services to potential clients while strictly streamlining processes in line with regulations and ensuring compliance to enforced practices and policies. Panos is currently the Commercial Manager of eBOS.
Regional Lead (Greece, Cyprus & Bulgaria), SAS Institute S.A, Greece
Yiannis Papatsiros is the Regional Lead for SAS Greece, Cyprus and Bulgaria. His previous title at SAS was as the Country Sales Leader, managing accounts in banking and telecommunication industry. Prior to SAS, he worked at IBM where he managed important Strategic Outsourcing projects while at the same time he was positioned as Service Management Competency Leader for Greece. Yiannis holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Crete, a MSc from Southampton Solent University in Business IT Strategy and a professional MBA from Hellenic American University.
Logicom Solutions, member of the Logicom Group of companies, is one of the leading technology companies in the region and the digital transformation partner of choice for many Public and Private Organizations in Cyprus, Greece and Malta. Logicom Solutions provides end-to-end technology solutions and services spanning from strategic ideation and crafting of a digital vision to supporting organization realize value through the right execution and implementation of technology projects. Partner with some of the most innovative technology companies in the world like CISCO, Microsoft and Accenture, Logicom Solutions helps organizations transform and remain relevant and competitive in a new digital world.
CITR is part of Impetum Group, together with Roca Investments and RocaX. Each company of the Group covers a different stage of a business life. Roca Investments combines financial resources and management knowledge finding the balance between risks and opportunities. RocaX is their technology wing, building bridges between revolutionary ideas and business angels. All together as Impetum Group bring smart partnership, entrepreneurial vision, relevance & scope, perseverance & passion.
In a world that is constantly evolving, our aim at PwC Cyprus is to find the right solutions to complex problems. We focus on quality and build strong relationships based on trust, creating value for our clients, stakeholders and society. Based on PwC’s new global strategy, “The New Equation”, we look at problems from different angles and present innovative solutions that make a difference and lead to sustained outcomes. More than 1,000 people in Cyprus join forces with 295,000 professionals of our global network in 156 countries and create an experienced team that combines intelligent approaches, experience and technological innovation. Visit www.pwc.com.cy to discover the benefits we can bring to you.
IMH is a leading Corporate Events and Media organization operating in the Knowledge and Information Economy. It provides products and services based on content, intelligence and connections to specialist audiences. IMH services include the organization of conferences, summits, client events, exhibitions, business, and mainstream media. Every year, IMH organizes more than 200 corporate events in physical, hybrid and online form: Conferences and Exhibitions on all market sectors, Investment summits and road shows in Cyprus and abroad, Client Conferences and other corporate events, Business award ceremonies. Our corporate events provide the biggest networking, business development, knowledge providing and career advancement opportunities in Cyprus. IMH media department operates, publishes and distributes: IN Business, the leading monthly business magazine in Cyprus, GOLD, the leading English-language monthly business Magazine in Cyprus, IN Business Portal (www.inbusinessnews.com), GOLD Portal (www.goldnews.com.cy), Over 40 annual business catalogues, supplements and directories, Reporter (www.reporter.com.cy), one of the most visited multi-thematic news portal in Cyprus. IMH recently acquired Super FM, the leading music radio station in Cyprus.
The Forum is addressed to Board Members, CEOs, CFOs, COOs, CROs, Managing Directors, Finance Directors, CRM Managers, Marketing Mangers, HR Managers, IT Managers and other senior executives from the banking sector. It will bring together commercial and retail banks operating in Cyprus, investment firms, forex brokers, fiduciary services firms, accounting/audit/tax firms, law firms, insurance companies, fund companies and asset management firms (including pension funds, UCITS and AIFs), consultancy firms and IT solution providers. The Forum will also welcome representatives from relevant local regulatory bodies and governmental authorities.
Alpha Bank Cyprus Ltd is a full subsidiary of the Alpha Bank Group, one of the leading groups in the financial sector in Greece, with a strong presence in the local and international market. Alpha Bank Cyprus Ltd offers a wide range of products and services, covering Retail, SMEs, Corporate and International Banking, which respond to the demands of its Customers. Moreover, it ensures a good working environment for its Employees, cares for the environment, and supports social and cultural development.
Established in 2008, AstroBank operates a network of 15 branches and business units across Cyprus, offering innovative and technologically advanced products and services tailored to the needs of its local and international clientele. AstroBank’s operations are based on four pillars: Retail, Corporate/SME, Private Banking & Wealth Management, and International Business Banking. Clients can always rely on AstroBank’s team of highly qualified experts to deliver customised solutions and guidance. Since its establishment, the bank has been working on boosting competitiveness and contributing to the country’s business environment by exploring new opportunities, and cultivating a culture of cooperation with clients.
The Bank of Cyprus Group is the leading banking and financial services group in Cyprus, providing a wide range of financial products and services which include retail and commercial banking, finance, factoring, investment banking, brokerage, fund management, private banking, life and general insurance. The Group’s digital infrastructure is proving successful, transforming the Bank to a modern, customer-centric hub offering banking and broader financial digital products and services in Cyprus. The Group has set the foundations to enhance its organisational resilience and ESG agenda and continues to work towards building a forward-looking organisation with a clear strategy supported by effective corporate governance aligned with ESG agenda priorities, aiming to lead the transition of Cyprus to a sustainable future.
Founded in 1963, cdbbank (Cyprus Development Bank) is today one of the country’s leading niche financial institutions dedicated to satisfying the needs of domestic and international clients. cdbbank offers a wide range of specialised financial services and products, designed to accommodate the sophisticated requirements of its clientele which consists of corporate and institutional clients and high net worth individuals. The Bank’s vision is to be the reference Bank for businesspeople. Relying on its long-term experience and high level of expertise, cdbbank aspires to establish long-term relationships of trust with its clients, always delivering excellence and value.
Hellenic Bank is one of the leading financial institutions in Cyprus. It provides businesses and households a full spectrum of competitive banking products and services including insurance services through its two insurance subsidiaries (life and general insurance companies). With strong capital adequacy and robust liquidity Hellenic Bank is at the forefront of financing the growth and transformation of the island’s most important industries and businesses. The Bank’s success is based on its customer centric, personal approach and the wide range of products and services it offers. Hellenic Bank accelerated its digital transformation and introduced first-class technologies to its digital channels offering seamless customer experience.
Through its representation of ten member banks, that hold more than 90% market share and provide a full range of banking services, the Association of Cyprus Banks (ACB) is the voice of the Cyprus banking system. Its primary aim is to promote best practices for the interest of the banking sector and the local economy as a whole. The ACB is a non-profit organization through which common positions are formulated and promoted on banking and financial issues, when local legislative and governmental policies are determined.
GOLD magazine was founded in 2011 as the first English-language business monthly in Cyprus. Today, it is not only synonymous with the promotion of good business practices but it has a unique and valuable readership of High Net Worth Individuals, international company executives, English-speaking Cypriot and non-Cypriot businessmen and women. GOLD provides a comprehensive and informed overview of the local business scene, the economy, and the market and has gained a reputation for its in-depth articles and revealing interviews with key local and international personalities. www.goldnews.com.cy
IN Business magazine has a monthly readership of over 89,000. It is the only monthly business magazine in Cyprus that provides a comprehensive overview of all segments of the economy, from retail to services, as well as reporting on new deals, presenting new faces and, generally, looking at everything that’s happening on the local business scene. IN Business has always been a pioneer in local business journalism, thanks to its in-depth analysis and research, often backed by previously unpublished facts and figures. www.inbusinessnews.com
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