x15ventures appoints key fintech specialists
Commonwealth Bank’s venture scaling entity, x15ventures, has appointed two key fintech specialists, including its first non-executive, independent Chairman.
Ben Heap has been appointed non-executive, independent Chairman of x15ventures, bringing a wealth of financial services and fintech experience to the role.
Mr Heap is well known in the start-up and investment industries, having held a number of senior roles at Australasian Wealth Investments; UBS Global Asset Management; the Financial Services Council; and as founder of H2 Ventures, a fintech-focused venture capital fund.
Speaking about his appointment, Mr Heap said he was honoured to be announced as the first non-executive, independent Chairman of x15ventures.
“Since its launch, x15ventures has had a relentless focus on creating an environment for new businesses to flourish. I look forward to working with the Board and the management team to continue this focus, and further empower Australia’s innovators to bring new solutions to market,” he said.
In addition to the appointment of Mr Heap, x15ventures has appointed its first external Portfolio Advisor, Jane Martino.
In her new role, Ms Martino will provide insight and recommendations to x15’s investment committee regarding the funding of potential new ventures.
Ms Martino brings more than 20 years’ experience in entrepreneurial, growth and business management roles, and is a passionate supporter and participant in the Australian start-up and investment ecosystem.
“I believe the next wave of major breakthroughs for customers will be delivered via high-growth start-ups obsessed about solving problems faster and better than ever before. I am excited to be able to help x15ventures identify and support these new opportunities, which will ultimately empower Australian customers like never before,” she said.
In welcoming the new appointments, x15ventures Managing Director, Toby Norton-Smith, said: “Jane brings a rare blend of successful entrepreneurial experience and a track record of scaling and growing businesses with venture capital and corporate investors and distribution partnerships – making her the ideal person to support and qualify the next opportunities for x15.”
“I am also delighted to welcome Ben as the non-executive, independent Chairman of x15venture’s Board. Ben’s long and celebrated career in financial services, as well as his extensive experience in the start-up scene, will help to deepen the Board’s existing skills and expertise.
“I look forward to working alongside him as x15 continues its mandate of building and investing in companies that will shape Australia’s future in the world.
“Both these appointments speak to x15 and CBA’s commitment to bring the right external experience and challenge from the Australian technology, investment and fintech community, to ensure x15 delivers on its promise.”