For episode 9 of HeadBox Connect, Ann-Marie Rossiter was joined by Paybase Founder and CEO Anna Tsyupko, where Anna described how Paybase is challenging the status quo in the FinTech industry and how important it is, as CEO, to relax and take time for yourself.
Ann-Marie: Can you give our listeners a little bit of a background on Paybase and explain how the idea came about?
Anna: After doing my degree I ended up working in private equity and managing a few different investments. One of them was a consumer-facing peer-to-peer FinTech company that I got involved in as an Investment Manager.
What I realised is that, on the face of it, it was quite a simple product. Two people sending funds back and forth to one another. But instead of being able to focus on the product-market fit, the founding team spent so much time trying to sort out payments.
That’s when I thought, this absolutely can be done better. Payments shouldn’t be a hindrance, they should be an enabler. It should be something that helps your business move forward, and so that’s really how the Paybase idea was born.
My Co-Founder and I knew exactly how we could help them and so we built the Paybase platform which completely automates payments reconciliation and payments from online marketplaces and gig or sharing economy platforms. That gives them all the regulatory cover they need in terms of regulation compliance and fraud prevention.
Ann-Marie: What do you think is the biggest mistake you’ve made and what did you learn from it?
Anna: One of the biggest learnings that I’m still making is being disciplined at delegating. I’ve been struggling with that because often I feel like I can just do that quickly myself or I feel like it’s not fair to say to everyone else do this or do that and not do anything myself.
As a CEO you need to be okay with just letting go. You need to be disciplined and ask somebody else to do it for me because otherwise, I will not have the time and the headspace to focus on the most important things that I need to be focussed on.
The funny thing is we’ve got a fantastic team here and every single one of our team members is better at what they do than I am! So it’s not even a question of trust so much as a question of maybe I can help or maybe getting my thoughts would be helpful or maybe they need guidance.
Ann-Marie: Where will you and Paybase be in a year’s time?
Anna: In Europe. I think that’s the most important milestone. We are operating just in the UK for now but we recognise that especially within the gig sharing economy and within the online marketplace space, players want to scale quickly, players want to internationalise and at least have an EU-wide presence. We want to be the partner that supports our clients across Europe.
Ann-Marie: What advice would you give to somebody who wants to start their own business?
Anna: Be prepared to give it your all but at the same time make sure to leave enough energy and time for yourself for a hobby of yours or whatever it is you enjoy doing.
Have something going on outside of work that is also pushing you forward. You need something to balance things out so give it your all but make sure you don’t forget about yourself.