The Venture Center on Wednesday (Aug. 31) announced it is growing its team of leaders to focus on building its fintech programming and to expand entrepreneurial support in the global financial technology industry.
Hamza Qadir has been promoted to managing director of fintech programs and will lead the Venture Center’s efforts working with the most promising fintech founders and the world’s top financial services industry leaders seeking innovation to better serve their customers. Pierce Sloan has been promoted to senior program manager for fintech programs and Camille Santrach has been hired as program manager for fintech programs.
The moves come on the heels of the Venture Center’s recent inaugural VenCent Fintech Summit in Little Rock.
The Venture Center’s fintech programming includes two globally recognized accelerators that have been operating since 2016. The FIS Accelerator program provides mentorship for fintech entrepreneurs from experts in the field, as well as in-depth access to the FIS network and has graduated 70 alumni, 90% of which are still active or have been acquired.
The ICBA (Independent Community Bankers of America) ThinkTech Accelerator is the only community bank-focused fintech accelerator in the world, helping community banks keep pace with disruptive financial technologies and connecting entrepreneurs with the ICBA executive network and hundreds of its community bank members.
“Our influence in the fintech space is growing as we continue to build strong partnerships with bankers and entrepreneurs around the world,” said Wayner Miller, executive director of The Venture Center. “A welcome spotlight is on Little Rock to continue as a desirable hub for fintech, and this strategic move to focus more of our time and resources on fintech programs and grow our industry reach makes sense as we keep an eye on what’s ahead for Arkansas. Hamza, Pierce and Camille are highly capable and passionate about equipping the entrepreneurs with whom we work.”
The VenCent Fintech Summit concluded on August 17 with more than 400 in attendance as the first event of its kind to connect bankers, fintech innovators and experts to find realistic solutions for the financial services industry.