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Divisive ex-Morgan Stanley tech head's 2023 fintech hiring spree

At the start of 2023, Morgan Stanley's former global head of technology, Rob Rooney, split from the investment bank to become CEO of digital wallet fintech HyperJar. He's wasted little time in establishing his presence there, hiring a number of new executives and driving a technology focused hiring approach at all levels below it.

Two new executive officers have joined Hyperjar so far in 2023. The most prominent is Chief Operating Officer (COO) Louise Chan. She joins from payments firm Ebury where she was also CEO, but has an extensive background in traditional finance, including being HSBC's global head of digital payments. The previous COO, Chris Lowrie, has remained at the company to head its B2B2C offering, Hyperlayer.

Another executive to join has been interim Chief Product Officer Joe Tarragano, who joins from logistics company Evri, where he was also CPO. His numerous previous roles include head of UK merchant acquisitions for eBay and investment analyst for JPMorgan, where he was interestingly using AI trading algorithms as early as 1989 in the Robert Fleming team. Hyperjar appears not to have had any CPO prior to his appointment.

Tarragano isn't the only product person to arrive after Rooney. Senior product manager Alina Nesterenko joined in January from payments platform Payler and, last month, product manager Ellen Endres joined from PR firm Edelman.

A number of engineers have joined also, including senior engineer Karen Osmond who worked at asset manager AgFe for over a decade, and devops engineer Connor George, who was most recenlty at real estate tech startup edozo. 

Rooney hasn't got the best of reputations due to his overseeing of mass layoffs in the bank's tech department. However, HyperJar itself has rave reviews: 4.7 stars out of five with 93% CEO approval. 2023 reviews say "everyone is willing to help out and makes you feel welcome," though some note that it "seems to be a bit cliquey, particularly with staff in the office." 

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AUTHORAlex McMurray Reporter

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