Fintech startup Wahed expands female leadership with Juliana Abu Bakar as Country Head of Wahed Malaysia
By Digital News Asia April 29, 2022
- Wide fintech experience as ex-head of Digital Wallet for Touch ‘n Go
- Wahed hopes the hire will pave way for more diverse talent to join it
Wahed, a New York headquartered global fintech company that has raised at least US$40 million (RM173.3 million) since its 2016 launch and counts Saudi Aramco Entrepreneurship Ventures among its investors, announced the appointment of Juliana Abu Bakar as Country Head of Wahed Technologies Sdn Bhd (Wahed Malaysia). Her responsibilities will include managing local offerings, implementing growth strategies and spearheading marketing and business development functions in Malaysia.
Juliana will be replacing Syakir Hashim - who captained Wahed Malaysia from its inception. Syakir will be joining Wahed’s group management as its Senior Vice President of Business Operations. Under his leadership, Wahed Malaysia which was launched in October 2019, acquired over 250,000 clients and gained operational profitability.
Commenting on his new position and the appointment of Juliana as Country Head, Syakir said: “Today, we are one of the leading digital investment managers in Malaysia and I couldn't be more grateful. I’d like to thank the Wahed Malaysia team, regulators and wider ecosystem for supporting us.”
Juliana brings years of experience to her new role. As the Head of Digital Wallet for Touch ‘n Go, she developed and operationalized Touch ‘n Go e-wallet as a new product, including obtaining related regulatory approvals from Bank Negara Malaysia. She also successfully enhanced use cases for the e-wallet by collaborating with strategic partners, along with obtaining online and physical merchants to accept the e-wallet as a new form of cashless payment.
“Juliana joining us marks Wahed’s aim to promote a strong female leadership team at the company. We also hope her decision to be part of Wahed will pave the way for more diverse talent to join us and help us to create the best financial services for consumers,” said Syakir.
Juliana’s appointment comes directly after Wahed announced former SEC Director Lori Richards joining its Board of Directors as the company’s first female director.
“My heart has always been in the fintech industry. What attracted me to Wahed the most is the fact that inclusivity is its main business objective. I’m looking forward to making the Wahed brand a household name for Malaysian investment needs and thus, achieving our objective of providing inclusivity in the world of finance,” said Juliana.
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