PRISM GROUP AND RSP APPOINT MATRIX IFS

PRISM GROUP AND RSP APPOINT MATRIX IFS

The consortium (the “Consortium”) of Prism Group AG (“Prism”) and Abu Dhabi’s Royal Strategic Partners (“RSP”) has appointed globally- renowned business and technology solutions company Matrix International Financial Services to advise on financial compliance and fraud prevention measures at Finablr Ltd and its subsidiaries (the “Group”), the global payment solutions group it agreed to acquire in December 2020.

Matrix is one of the world’s leading specialists in providing business and technology solutions for the complex needs of the global financial industry and Capital Markets. Its expertise include devising and implementing fraud prevention strategies, advising on measures to tackle financial crime and introducing comprehensive anti-money laundering policies. Matrix will work with Prism Group AG to introduce efficient and effective financial crime systems and processes across the Group. Prism formed a consortium with Royal Strategic Partners to complete the purchase of Finablr Ltd at the end of last year – since when the Consortium and Finablr Plc have been working in conjunction with regulators and stakeholders to conclude the formalities of the acquisition.

Speaking from Prism’s regional office in Dubai, Prism Group AG co- founder Amir Nagammy said: “The appointment of Matrix is another significant milestone in our plan to recapitalise, restructure and rebuild the Group and revitalise its portfolio of assets in some of the world’s fastest-growing markets. Together with Royal Strategic Partners, the Consortium is committed to working with all of Finablr Group’s stakeholders to build a major international fintech group of companies 2 serving the remittance and payment needs of its 22 million customers across 170 countries. The transformation of the Group will create a world-leading financial services platform in some of the world’s most dynamic and rapidly-expanding economies”. Dr. Hamad Al-Ali, CEO of Royal Strategic Partners, said: “We are delighted to announce the appointment of Matrix, which has advised many leading firms on compliance issues and putting systems in place to fight financial crime. The calibre and experience of the advisors we are working with demonstrates our determination to restore the Group as quickly as possible in the interests of its lenders, customers and employees”.

Mr. Robert Miller, Finablr Group CEO said: “The appointment of Matrix shows progress continues to be made as we work with all our stakeholders to restore the financial stability of Finablr. I would like to thank them for their patience and support. I remain optimistic that the deal agreed with the Consortium will enable the company’s operations in the UAE and the wider region to continue and to grow”. Angad Chadha, Head of Innovation and Digital at Prism Group AG, added: “We are delighted to be partnering with Matrix IFS, whose clients include many of the world’s leading financial institutions. Matrix is one of the leading providers of financial crime and compliance solutions, and it will work with us to ensure our policies and practices are comprehensive and robust. Technology has transformed financial markets and it is vital that we have the best systems in place to identify, prevent or report financial crime”.

Last month, the Consortium appointed independent investment bank Moelis & Company to advise the Group on a debt restructuring. Moelis & Company has advised a succession of leading international companies on corporate restructuring and transformation programmes in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), where Finablr is based, and it has a strong and well-established global fintech practice. In addition, the Consortium has been funding urgent working capital needed to stabilise the business and to preserve value and is seeking to 3 restart operations and implement its business plan for the Group going forward.

The Consortium intends to revitalise the Group in order to secure the status of UAE Exchange and Xpress Money as key pillars of the UAE’s financial system in one of the world’s most dynamic, exciting and fastest- growing business destinations.

The appointments of Matrix and Moelis & Company represent a significant step forward in the Consortium’s plan to recapitalise the company on behalf of its customers, employees and stakeholders. It will lead to the anticipated re-opening of UAE Exchange, the Abu Dhabi-based remittance house, whose branches have been closed since March 2020, along with the Group’s other leading products. They include global money transfer Group Xpress Money and businesses in international markets including India.

The products the Group offers include currency exchange, payments and remittance solutions services to more than 22 million customers and over 1,500 corporate partners.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Notes to editors

1. Global Fintech Investments Holding AG (“GFIH”), a subsidiary of Prism Group AG (“Prism”) signed a share purchase agreement to acquire the entire issued share capital of Finablr Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Finablr PLC, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange, in December 2020. The assets of Finablr Ltd include Xpress Money, Times of Money and UAE Exchange. 2. Matrix IFS is a US-based company that provides financial crime and compliance solutions and services for the financial sector, serving many of the world’s top tier institutions. It advises customers on business and technology challenges in anti-money laundering, risk management, fraud prevention, business intelligence and trade-surveillance, to enable them to implement and maintain highly efficient and effective financial crime systems and processes.

Adrianus Schoorl

Group General Counsel and Head of Compliance

Adrianus (Aryan) Schoorl is presently the head of the financial services regulatory team in the Middle East of the leading law firm White & Case LLP and features prominently in the legal rankings and directories. His specific area of expertise is financial technology and Aryan worked with a number of regulators on building out frameworks and supervision capacity. Aryan will be our Group General Counsel and Head of Compliance from May 2022.

Yuval Ben-Haim

Non-Executive Director

Yuval Ben-Haim works in senior positions with companies at the forefront of technological change. He is President of Goji Food Solutions, a pioneering technology company that has popularised RF cooking, using radio waves to heat food quickly and efficiently, and was an executive at Impulse Dynamics, a medical technology company specialising in treating chronic heart failure. Yuval was a Business Development Manager at Hobart Group, a private equity firm that invests in medical technologies, overseeing international M&A and investment deals with a value of over $1 billion. He received a BSc in Physics and Medical Physics from University College London and an MBA with distinction from INSEAD in France. He is a member of the Young Presidents Organisation.

Siri Georjon

Office Manager

Siri Georjon has a broad knowledge of administration and project management. She holds a bachelor degree of Science in Nutrition from Queen Margaret University (UK) and a Master’s in Health Science from the University of Lucerne (CH). After graduation, she worked in various administrative roles and has experience in both back- and front office management. She then joined a start-up, where she spearheaded several projects and helped build an effective administrative process from scratch.

Nisrine Batata

Head of Marketing and Communications

Nisrine Batata specialises in financial marketing, communications and public relations projects across Europe and the MENA region. She was most recently the Head of Government and Enterprise Affairs for Africa at Time Magazine, and spent more than 10 years as a project manager at Jeune Afrique Media Group, the leading media group of Francophone Africa, covering strategic planning of the Africa CEO Forum, the annual conference for the African private sector.

Holly Taylor

Executive Assistant

Holly Taylor has extensive experience of front- and back-office roles and has held a number of administrative jobs over the last 10 years. After completing college with a distinction in Business and Management she worked as a junior legal secretary before moving to Santander Corporate Banking, where she supported the Head of Corporate Lending. Holly relocated to Dubai in 2016 and has since worked alongside a number of C-Level executives, including CEOs and Partners.

Malin Henschel

Head of Financial

Malin has 15 years of experience in the financial services industry. She most recently headed up the operational due diligence team at a prominent wealth management firm, leading the reviews of structures and operations of a vast range of investment firms. She is a Chartered Financial Analyst and holds a Master of Science in Corporate Finance from the Institute of Business Administration at Université Jean Moulin Lyon III.

Alexandra Lavrovscaia

Project Manager

Alexandra Lavroscaia is a business-development project manager with a background in private equity, real-estate fund management and real-estate technology. She has more than 10 years’ experience in managing complex projects, cross-border transactions, fund-raising and investor relations in a diverse range of industries. Alexandra has a Master’s degree in International Business from HULT International Business School in London and a Bachelor of Arts from McGill University, Montreal.

Peter Goss

Head of Product

Peter Goss is a UK-based Technology Leader with expertise in the IT lifecycle; Enterprise and Solution Architecture; Product and Technology Strategy; Product Management; and Governance and Solution Assurance. For more than 20 years Peter has delivered architecturally aligned solutions, strategy, target operating models, and architecture capability definition to support business transformation and deliver key business outcomes. Peter has worked in leadership and senior roles for London Underground Ltd; Capgemini; KPMG; and Experian, bringing diverse experience across finance; banking; credit services; legal; local government; education; transport; publishing; and health. Peter has a Master of Engineering degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Manchester, is TOGAF-9 certified and an IAF practitioner.

Ali Farid Khwaja

Advisor

Ali has more than 15 years’ experience in equity research and investments. He is a Director at KASB Securities, one of Pakistan’s leading stockbrokers. Ali was a Partner at Autonomous Research in London (now a part of Alliance Bernstein), where he led equity research of European Fintech companies. Prior to that, he was the CFO and Board Director of SafeCharge Group (LSE: SCH LN), a global payments company listed on the London Stock Exchange. He has been a top-ranked Technology Analyst in Europe at Berenberg and UBS. Ali is an alumnus of Georgetown Leadership Seminar and the University of Oxford, where he was a Rhodes Scholar. He is also a Patron of the British Pakistan Foundation and a member of the Business and Entrepreneur Forum of the UK Conservative Party.
He holds a First Class Honors in BSc Investment and Financial Risk Management from Cass Business School London and CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) and Financial Risk Manager (FRM) qualifications.

Sanjay Manchanda

Chief Operating Officer

Prior to joining WizzFinancial, Sanjay Manchanda was CEO of the Dubai-based property developer, Nakheel (2012–2020). He also served as a Partner for the Middle East at the professional services network, Price Waterhouse Coopers (1987–2012) and as Chief Restructuring Advisor for the Dubai-based jewellery retailer, Damas International.

He received his Bachelor of Commerce from the Shri Ram College of Commerce, University of Delhi.

Amir Nagammy

Co-Founder and Chairman

Amir Nagammy is a London-based investor and entrepreneur focused on the technology and financial services sectors in emerging markets.  He has a 25-year track record of building and scaling companies in the UK, GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council), India, Africa and other emerging markets, transforming them into profitable, large-scale enterprises that consistently produce impressive returns. Amir studied for a BA in Business Administration and Management from the University of Derby, Advanced Studies in Accountancy at RGC, and a Master’s Degree in International Management & Entrepreneurship from Swinburne University of Technology.

Errol Fonseca

Advisor

Errol Fonseca is the Co-Founder of online travel and tourism portal, Blahotelsearch. Prior to this he was at Travelex from 2014-2020, most recently as its CEO for North America, Canada and Panama, where he launched its first global cross-border payments programme with Samsung as well as pioneering new markets.

He has served in senior roles in New Zealand, India, the UAE and the Gulf for such household-name multinationals as Ahli United Bank, American Express, ANZ Bank, Bahrain Financing Co, Bank of New Zealand, GE Capital, Modi Xerox and Standard Chartered Bank.

He graduated from Massey University, New Zealand with a Diploma in Business Management.

Obiora Ogbunude

Advisory Board Member, WizzFinancial

Obiora Ogbunude is the Managing Partner of Blakeney Management, a London-based investment firm. Blakeney is one of the longest-standing international fund managers focusing on Africa and the Middle East. Over the last two decades Obi has led investments in many of the leading companies in Africa and the Middle East, in sectors including financial services, telecoms, e-commerce and FMCG. Obi graduated from the London Business School (MBA 2000), is a trained physician, and holds degrees in Medicine and Surgery (Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, 1991) from the University of Benin in Nigeria.

Ben Sanders

Head of Strategy

Ben Sanders specialises in strategy and day-to-day technology operations for award-winning fintech and high-growth company start-ups and scale-ups across multiple industry sectors. Most recently he was MD of Europe for Pollen, a travel and entertainment marketplace voted the fourth-fastest growing company in the UK. Ben began his career as a management consultant at Bain & Company, based in Madrid and London, and then moved to the e-Commerce team of Worldpay Group.
After their successful IPO, he moved to Pockit, a digital banking platform for the financially excluded, and oversaw a five-fold increase in customer and revenue growth over three years.

Angad Chadha

Head of Technology

Angad Chadha has a diverse background, with experience in investment banking, start-ups and machine learning. His roles in investment banking include Event-Driven Trading and Financial Engineering for Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley respectively. He has worked on a number of machine-learning projects, collaborating with data scientists to build predictive models and recommendation algorithms from inception. Angad graduated with a Distinction in Financial Engineering from Imperial College London.

Dominic Traynor

Director

Dominic Traynor is a London based company director and solicitor specialising in equity capital markets, and is a partner at Druces LLP, one of the City’s oldest law firms. At Druces and formerly at Ronaldsons LLP, a niche capital-markets firm, he advised on the structuring and listing of more than 30 companies on the Main Market and Alternative Investment Market (AIM) of the London Stock Exchange and he has extensive experience in corporate governance. As well as being a director of Prism Group/Global Fintech Investments Holding, he is a director of the Australian-Saudi electric vehicle-battery chemicals company, EV Metals Group plc; was a founding director of AIM-listed construction materials company, SigmaRoc plc; and sits on the boards of a number of other companies. Dominic graduated from the College of Law, York, and received his LLB from Durham University.

Anthony Wagerman

Chairman of the Advisory Board, WizzFinancial

Anthony Wagerman has worked with Travelex, the world’s largest specialist foreign exchange company, for 17 years, and was its CEO from 2015-2018. He was also its Retail Director, Managing Director for Europe & Americas, and Deputy CEO. He helped to build Travelex into a global leader in foreign exchange for retail and corporate customers. He also served as a Non-Executive Director on a number of Travelex Boards in the UK, the US and Brazil and held board positions at several joint-venture companies in the Middle East. He is a non-Executive Director at BFC Bank (UK) Ltd and a Senior Advisor to the Esselco Group of companies. He is a Trustee of a leading anti-racism charity and sits on the board of an educational advisory charity.

Ebrahim Nonoo

Executive Chairman and CEO of Money

In 1992 Ebrahim Nonoo joined his family firm, BFC Group, founded in 1917 in Bahrain. He started as a foreign exchange dealer and the following year became a Director of the business, overseeing the expansion of this Gulf-based money transfer, foreign currency exchange, and wholesale currency exchange provider into Kuwait, establishing the Bahrain Exchange Company (BEC) and BFC Exchange Limited (formerly known as EzRemit) in 2003. Prism Group announced its acquisition of BFC in August 2021 and it is now part of Prism’s WizzFinancial group.

BFC specialises in fast, reliable money transfers through a variety of services, is pioneering new financial and security tehcnologies, and has an extensive correspondent network that includes several prestigious international financial institutions. Through them BFC has a presence in over 100 countries, and has 95 branches in Bahrain, Kuwait, the UK and India.

Guy Rothschild

Co-Founder and COO

Guy Rothschild has 20 years of experience in financial and management roles at public and private international companies. He is the Founder and Director of G. Rothschild GmbH, which provides financial and strategic advice to businesses, family offices and individuals. He has an in-depth knowledge of the European, Asian, and North American markets, and a thorough understanding of corporate structures. He has taken part in M&A transactions and was part of the team that led a private equity owned business from start-up to full production. Guy has a BA in Economics and Accounting from Bar-Ilan University and an MBA in International Business from CASS Business School.

Dr Sultan Ali Al Ahbabi

CEO

Dr Sultan Ali Al Ahbabi is the CEO of Prism Group. He is a Board Member of Siadah International Real Estate Development in Dubai. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Construction and Engineering Management from Texas A&M University, and a Doctorate in Business Administration from Abu Dhabi University. He also holds a Business Certificate from Mays Business School at Texas A&M University, and is a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE); the Society of Engineers, UAE; and the American Academy of Project Management.