Discover your dream Career
For Recruiters

Ex-Citi associate: founding a fintech is the peak of exhaustion

Young bankers pulling 90-hour weeks might think they've got the most difficult job in the world, but there's always a bigger fish. One person who's found that out firsthand is Alec Beasley, who, after three and a half years at Citi in London, left to found his own fintech, Investa.

Unlike the young bankers who left to found fintechs in the fintech golden age, Beasley chose to leave at a difficult time. “I haven’t seen too many people leave banking this year, especially for fintech," he tells us. "This was a leap of faith." Nonetheless, his experience in equity derivatives sales is what inspired the idea for Investa, a fintech that aims to open up the options market to retail investors. 

Click here to sign up for our fintech newsletter

Beasley and his co-founder Ross Lynch are non-technical founders, having no background in software development. This made the 'tech' side of fintech an immediate issue. "It was all new to us, a massive learning experience," says Beasley. Hiring a fractional CTO and a pair of software engineers with experience in both financial services and startups helped get the ball rolling. 

At Citi, Beasley was used to being in the office five days per week. At Investa, things are a bit more hybrid but he still wants staff in the office more often than not. Three days are good because "it's so much easier to get ideas across in person than typing on slack. There can be a bit of miscommunication sometimes.”

Beasley is fussy about who he hires. He says an available role for a software engineer consists of a six stage interview process featuring conversations with both founders, then the CTO, then multiple technical exams, then an interview with HR, and then finally a meal with the successful candidate. "We don’t want to make the same mistakes I know that quite a lot of other companies did," he says, "we're not going to be cutting corners."

These kinds of lengthy processes might be contributing to Beasley's tiredness.  “I used to think working in banking was the peak of mental and physical exhaustion," he says, "now I see it’s running your own startup.”

Click here to create a profile on eFinancialCareers. Make yourself visible to recruiters hiring for top jobs in technology and finance.

Have a confidential story, tip, or comment you’d like to share? Contact: +44 7537 182250 (SMS, Whatsapp or voicemail). Telegram: @SarahButcher. Click here to fill in our anonymous form, or email editortips@efinancialcareers.com. Signal also available.

Bear with us if you leave a comment at the bottom of this article: all our comments are moderated by human beings. Sometimes these humans might be asleep or away from their desks, so it may take a while for your comment to appear. Eventually it will – unless it’s offensive or libelous (in which case it won’t.)

author-card-avatar
AUTHORAlex McMurray Editor
  • Ed
    Eddy oj
    13 October 2023

    6 interviews. No wonder this bloke is knackered. He is not efficient with his time. And why is 6 interviews a thing? If you are not Google or Apple but a tiny startup, 6 interviews surely shows indecisive bosses that are inefficient with their time. No wonder you are knackered. Ironically, if you a candidate has a brain they would see past this and go for a different job.

  • [Deleted]
    13 October 2023

    [Deleted]

  • Do
    Dom Rauba
    13 October 2023

    Sounds like a great idea, keep up the good work. Can’t wait for the launch!

Sign up to Morning Coffee!

Coffee mug

The essential daily roundup of news and analysis read by everyone from senior bankers and traders to new recruits.

Boost your career

Find thousands of job opportunities by signing up to eFinancialCareers today.
Recommended Articles
Recommended Jobs
Wellington Management Company, LLP
Senior Business Analyst
Wellington Management Company, LLP
London, United Kingdom
Bruin
Regulatory Project Manager
Bruin
London, United Kingdom
Bohan Group
Central Risk Quant Trader
Bohan Group
Hong Kong
Radar Fx Fund
Hedge Fund Seeks Forex Traders
Radar Fx Fund
Dover, United States
DTG Capital Markets
Proprietary Trader (US, remote)
DTG Capital Markets
New York, United States

Sign up to Morning Coffee!

Coffee mug

The essential daily roundup of news and analysis read by everyone from senior bankers and traders to new recruits.