11:FS 3.0

 David M. Brear photo
David M. Brear Group CEO
3min read

When you’ve come so far it’s often nice to look back and draw some courage from the chaos. It’s nice to draw some strength from the things that you’ve overcome and some pride from what you’ve achieved.

We started 11:FS back in 2016 starry-eyed and naive to the stresses and strains that building a good and impactful business has. We bootstrapped our business and we knew from day one that the problem we were solving for had so many dimensions to it that our pursuits would only be limited by our ambitions, and our success only limited by our effort. We knew that taking this industry from digitised to digital and changing the fabric of financial services would only be possible if we unleashed the potential within the talent in our business and the wider industry and community. For that I think we have been truly disruptive.

We were so fortunate that some of the industry’s best and brightest minds have come to help us build the future of financial services - some having done amazing things here, some having moved on to do other amazing things and improve people’s financial lives in other ways. Some are still with us helping the industry to become truly digital today. And we say once an Eleven, always an Eleven.

‘Restless’ is one of our key values for a reason - we are restless in our work, in our ambitions, and in our execution. It’s who we are. That means our goal to improve the lives of billions of people around the world who are underserved, overcharged or overwhelmed with the content, products, and services needed to bridge the chasm to become truly digital will always be a work in progress. It will always be 1% finished but more importantly so are we.

We can hold little sacred if you realise that everything on the road to success will need to be ripped up and replaced.

We know what got us here won't get us to where we want to be - from the way the senior leaders spend their time today needing to evolve, the way our teams are structured, the way we set weekly, quarterly and annual targets and a multitude of other things in the mix. We can hold little sacred if you realise that everything on the road to success will need to be ripped up and replaced.

With a strong view of where we want to get to by 2026 aligned with our belief in pushing decision-making to the edges, this week we put that in action through the announcement of a reshaped steering committee that will take 11:FS to the next level.

I couldn’t be more proud and excited to have this leadership team around me that will lead, grow and inspire our next wave of growth:

  • Pierre Legrand, CEO Ventures

  • Nasir Ahmad, CEO 11:FS Pulse

  • Jo Wright, Group Chief Financial Officer

  • Mariette Ferreira, Group Chief Marketing Officer

  • Hannah Thompson, Group Chief People Officer

  • Ryan Wareham, Group Chief Operating Officer

  • Zoe Anstey, Group Chief of Staff

These changes allow my senior team to take more ownership of their business areas and those areas that support the success of the business. It also allows me to pass some of my duties over to my deputy CEO Jason Bates who will help me tackle these challenges and allow me to focus more time with our 11:FS Foundry team as its interim CEO. We’re only getting started with our own FS OS but it has an enormous amount of potential to allow us and the industry to reach its own potential.

we’re constantly pushing, challenging our work, and I wouldn’t trade that for anything.

Being restless is probably the thing that Jason, Ross, Simon & I had in common more than anything when we started out. That and a shared desire to actually do something about it. That means we’re constantly pushing, challenging our work, and I wouldn’t trade that for anything.

For Simon this means he’s ready for a new challenge. After over 6 years with the business he’ll be diving deep into the world of fraud, to keep learning and growing. This means he’ll be stepping away from his role at 11:FS.

Simon has been here from the beginning of 11:FS and will always be an Eleven. I know he’ll do great, and he knows how much his contribution to 11:FS means to us.

As we embark on a new phase of growth it's important to reflect on what got us here. Over the years we’ve been building out the 11:FS Global Advisory Team, made up of experts across crypto, payments, embedded finance, customer experience, insurance, and more. These amazingly talented Elevens will continue building on our impactful work.

There are big and exciting challenges ahead for us on our push towards 2026. We’re working on bold and interesting projects around the world which means all of us get to continue shaping the fabric of financial services and all our Elevens - past and present - are more determined than ever to make that happen.

It’s nice sometimes to look backwards. But for me I am always looking forwards towards the next challenge and the next opportunity and I’m sure that there will be countless of both of those ahead.

Here's to the next phase.

 David M. Brear
About the author

David M. Brear

David is the CEO of 11:FS and since his dream of being a sportsperson was crushed (along with the ligaments in his knee!) and he had to get a proper job, he has worked in pretty much every angle of financial services industry but never lost that competitive desire to win.