CANADA FINTECH FORUM 2024

September 10-11

Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth, Montréal
Presented by

Our 2024 speakers

Shelby Austin

Co-Founder and CEO, Arteria AI

Shelby Austin is the founder and CEO of Arteria AI Inc., an award-winning digital documentation software that was incubated and then spun out of the world’s largest consulting firm.  Arteria works with large financial institutions around the world providing infrastructure for them to document and monitor deals with clients.  

Shelby was previously the Managing Partner of Growth & Investments and Omnia AI at Deloitte. Shelby had responsibility for the Canadian firm’s inorganic and accelerated growth investments through acquisitions, ventures, incubation and scale-up and asset development activities and its AI and data footprint. 

Shelby joined Deloitte through its acquisition of her first company, a high-growth startup that also focused on documentation. Previously, Shelby was a Partner at a Canadian “Seven Sister” law firm where her practice focused on complex corporate and commercial litigation matters. 

Shelby was named to the Maclean’s 2024 list of the 100 Most Powerful Canadians, one of 10 in the AI category. In the past, Shelby has received the Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 award given by The Women’s Executive Network (WXN) and the Rising Stars award given by Lexpert Magazine to Canada’s leading lawyers under 40. In 2023, Arteria was recognized by CB Insights in its AI 100 rankings and by Gartner as one of three identified “Cool Vendors in Applying Generative AI to Banking” report. 

Surinderjit Kaur Bhatti

Founder and CEO, Fathom4Sight

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Debby Cordeiro

Senior Vice-President, Communications, Public Affairs and ESG, National Bank of Canada

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Dax Dasilva

Founder and CEO, Lightspeed

Dax Dasilva is the creative mind behind Lightspeed Commerce. Founded in 2005, Lightspeed is the unified POS and payments platform for ambitious entrepreneurs to accelerate growth, provide the best customer experience and become a go-to destination in their space. It powers the world's best businesses in over 100 countries globally. 

 

Dasilva was reappointed as CEO on February 15, 2024. Prior to that, he served as Executive Chair of Lightspeed’s board of directors for two years, and previously led the company’s operations as Chief Executive Officer since its founding in 2005. 

 

Lightspeed employs thousands of staff, and powers hundreds of thousands of customer locations worldwide. During Dasilva’s leadership as CEO, the company went public in March 2019 on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol LSPD, becoming one of Canada’s top 10 technology IPOs. In September 2020, the company listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Lightspeed also undertook 9 acquisitions over the course of a four year period to consolidate the global market and launch two, best-in-class flagship products: Lightspeed Retail and Lightspeed Restaurant. 

Philippe Daoust

Vice-President & Managing Director, NAVentures, National Bank of Canada

Philippe is the Managing Director for NAventures. He focuses on sourcing companies that will advance National Bank’s transformation. Before joining NAventures, Philippe developed and led the integration and separation advisory practice at a Big 4 firm. He played a varied role ranging from engagement sourcing to due diligence and integration advisory. He worked on large mergers and acquisition projects, including transformative deals for Canadian financial institutions. Philippe also practiced for several years in the United States, France, Latin America and New Zealand. 

Malcolm deMayo

Global Vice President, Financial Services Industry​, NVIDIA

Malcolm deMayo is global vice president at NVIDIA for the financial services industry.  Before joining NVIDIA, he managed strategic financial service industry customers at Oracle. Prior to this he held various leadership roles at Teradata, EMC, Veritas and TCS. DeMayobegan his career at NCR as an applications sales representative. He lives in New Canaan, Conn. 

Paul III Desmarais

Chairman and CEO, Sagard

Paul Desmarais III is the Chairman and CEO of Sagard, an alternative asset management firm
active in venture capital, private equity, private credit, real estate, healthcare royalties and
private wealth.


Paul took the helm of Sagard in 2016, along with a handful of close partners bound by a
common vision: partnering with entrepreneurs to catalyze transformation in our investments and
communities. Sagard has experienced outstanding growth in six years, with assets under
management increasing to over $13B, more than 300 professionals joining its ranks, and some
125 companies added to the portfolio.


Sagard has built a global network of expertise that helps companies lead, embrace, and stay
ahead of disruptive trends in the financial services, technology, and healthcare spaces, amongst
others. The team is behind some of the largest technology success stories in Canada such as
Wealthsimple and Dialogue.


Within the Sagard ecosystem, Paul is the Executive Chairman and Co-Founder of Portage and
the Chairman and Co-Founder of Diagram. Within the investment portfolios, he is the Chairman
of Wealthsimple, Dialogue, Novisto, and Grayhawk, and a director of nesto.


Paul is dedicated to helping build a better business world. He is Co-Founder of the Black Wealth
Club and the Indigenous Leadership Circle, where emerging Black and Indigenous leaders go to
learn about creating wealth and networks giving them tools and resources that can be
reinvested in their communities. Under Paul’s leadership, Sagard has committed to a more
sustainable financial system by becoming a signatory of the United Nations Principles for
Responsible Investment, enlisting as a CREO participant, and embarking on its journey to
carbon neutrality. Paul was also co-chair of the Centraide (United Way) campaign in 2022 and
will chair the large donors campaign for the same organization in 2024-2027.


Paul is a board member of the Glenbow Museum and serves as Chair of the Next Canada
Emeritus board of advisors. He is a recipient of the Duke of Edinburgh Award for his work
chairing the fundraising campaign for the Kenojuak Culture Center. He was formerly a board
member of the Rideau Hall Foundation and Alpine Canada. Paul also co-founded Young
Canadians in Finance and co-chaired the True Patriot Love Expedition to the magnetic North
Pole.


Prior to his current role, Paul worked at Goldman Sachs in the Investment Banking Division,
Investment Strategy Group and Special Situations Group, Imerys S.A. in supply chain
management and strategy and Great-West Lifeco Inc. in risk management. He has earned a
B.A. in Economics from Harvard College and holds an MBA from INSEAD.

Jonathan Durocher

President, National Bank Financial Wealth Management , National Bank of Canada

Jonathan Durocher has been president of National Bank Financial Wealth Management since May 2020. His mandate is to define business strategies and ensure their execution. Mr. Durocher is responsible for the full-service brokerage business, managing more than 2,000 employees and more than $160 billion in assets. 

Mr. Durocher began working at National Bank Financial Wealth Management in 2003, then became vice-president in 2008. In 2014, Mr. Durocher became President of National Bank Investments (NBI) where he was responsible for the asset management strategy of NBC. 

Mr. Durocher was a member of the board of directors of the Investment Funds Institute of Canada (IFIC) and works closely with many financial technology companies. He was recognized among the 25 stars of tomorrow's Quebec according to the newspaper Les Affaires and won the Top 25 of the Quebec financial industry in the under 40 category of Finance et Investissement. He also received the HEC-Montreal Emerging Award of Excellence in the Large Business category. 

He is very active on LinkedIn, where he promotes financial literacy and shares his views on the wealth management industry. He also contributes regularly to The Globe and Mail newspaper on different wealth management topics.

Harvey Finkelstein

President, Shopify

Harley Finkelstein is an entrepreneur, lawyer, and the President of Shopify. He founded his first company at age 17 while a student at McGill. Harley completed his law degree as well as his MBA at the University of Ottawa. Harley was one of the “Dragons” on CBC’s Next Gen Den and starred on Discovery Channel’s I Quit. He received the Canadian Angel Investor of the Year Award, Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 Award, Fortune’s 40 Under 40, and was inducted into the Order of Ottawa. From 2014 to 2017 Harley was on the Board of Directors of the C100, and from 2017 to 2020 he was on to the Board of Directors of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). He is currently on the Board of Directors of the National Retail Federation, Operation Hope, and the Montreal Children’s Hospital Foundation. Harley recently co-founded Firebelly, a modern high-end tea brand, and created Big Shot, a project and podcast that archives the stories of the greatest Jewish entrepreneurs of the last century. 

Vincent Fraser

President and CEO - Member of the board of directors, Croesus

Vincent Fraser is passionate about business and high technology, and has performed in these sectors for 25 years. During this time, he has developed expertise in leadership and the development of growth strategies combining human capital, financing, mergers and acquisitions, and good governance practices. In 2000, he co-founded Processia, a consulting and solutions integration company specializing in product lifecycle management. He led the company’s international development, with operations in North America, Europe, and Asia. Vincent is a graduate of Polytechnique Montréal and Harvard Business School. 

Roham Gharegozlou

Co-Founder and CEO, Dapper Labs

Roham Gharegozlou is a seasoned founder and active startup investor with a particular interest in consumer software and social trends. He has co-founded five companies and invested in nearly 100 others over the past 15 years.  

 

Roham is currently founder and CEO of Dapper Labs, the company that owns and operates social commerce platforms including NBA Top Shot, NFL ALL DAY, and Disney Pinnacle.  Roham was previously founder and CEO of Axiom Zen, an award-winning venture studio. Prior to starting Axiom Zen, Roham served as a Partner at Rising Tide Fund, an early-stage VC based in Silicon Valley.  

 

Outside of work, Roham is an avid traveler most comfortable on the slopes or out on the water. Roham holds BA, BS, and MS degrees from Stanford University in Economics and Biological Sciences.  

Eric Girard

Minister of Finance, Government of Quebec

Eric Girard was appointed Minister of Finance on 
October 18, 2018.


A native of Sept-Îles who was raised in Québec city and studied in 
Montréal, Mr. Girard has more than 25 years of experience in the 
investment and financial markets sectors. Prior to becoming
minister, he had been Treasurer of the National Bank since
November 2011.


He is keenly interested in economics, education, sports, and public 
policies, and is a board member of the Fondation CHU Sainte-Justine. 
He has also been a board member of CIRANO and a member of the 
governing board of the Académie Saint-Clément, in addition to 
being involved in the community as a hockey and baseball coach.

 

Mr. Girard holds a B.A. Joint Honours in Economics and Finance 
degree from McGill University and a master’s degree in economics 
from the Université du Québec à Montréal.

Ioan Iacob

Founder and CEO, FLOWX.AI

Ioan is the CEO and co-founder of FlowX.AI, the AI banking modernization platform that raised the largest Series A globally in the industry in 2023. Ioan has been working together with the same core team of founders and engineers for over a decade, having a previous successful exit. Founded in 2021 as a spin-off from their preceding venture, FlowX.AI is the first-ever end-to-end banking modernization and integration platform. It is designed and built for banks, leveraging a patent-pending AI technology that dramatically accelerates the modernization of business processes and technology.

Rheia Khalaf

Director of Partnerships, MILA

Rheia Khalaf, FSA, FCIA, CERA, is Director of Partnerships at Mila, Institut Québécois d'Intelligence Artificielle. She has over 15 years' experience in consulting and partnerships, in quantitative fields such as AI, risk management, actuarial science and asset management. She has held several roles in the past with Fin-ML and IVADO, Fiera Capital, E&Y, among others. Her academic background includes actuarial mathematics from Concordia University, a Masters in Risk Management from the University of Zurich, and a Certificate in Sustainable Investment from Queen's University. She is an advisor to start-ups and is involved in various initiatives on the future of work, responsible AI and ethics, risk management and governance, and the use of AI in sustainable finance and climate risk. She is also a member of the Technology Transfer Committee of Quebec's Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) and a collaborating researcher member of the Observatoire international sur les impacts sociétaux de l'AI et du numérique (OBVIA). 

Yannick Lallement

Chief Artificial Intelligence Officer, Scotiabank

Yannick Lallement serves as the VP & Chief AI Officer at Scotiabank, spearheading the integration and advancement of AI/ML technologies across the institution. He earned his PhD in artificial intelligence from the esteemed French National Institute of Computer Science. Before his tenure at Scotiabank, Yannick contributed his expertise to a variety of AI/ML initiatives for diverse public and private entities. 

Jeri Larsen

Chief Customer Officer, LoanPro

Prior to serving as the Chief Customer Officer at LoanPro, Jeri served in multiple executive soles across a variety of industries, including COO/CPO, SVP of Sales Ops, VP of Strategy and Analytics, and VP of Client Engagement.

In her career, Jeri has had the opportunity to meet organizational needs from the perspectives of CX, Sales, Ops, and L&D in both the public and private sectors—supporting FinTech, DataTech, MarTech, and EdTech.

Jeri has been featured as #8 on Women We Admire's "Top 50 Women Leaders of Utah" list and is the consummate consultant and fixer, leading teams throughout her career to create better client experiences from the people up. 

Simon Leroux

Founder and CEO, Optionality; Stealth

Simon Leroux is a serial entrepreneur in the field of AI. His last start-up, Gazelle, was acquired by KKR, a leading global investment firm. In 2024, he launched Optionality, backed by Inovia Capital. Optionality is on a mission to transform the M&A industry, while redefining what it means to be a Trusted Advisor. 

Jil Macdonald

Chief Operating Officer, Walnut Insurance

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Andrew Moor

President and CEO, EQ Bank

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Melisa Muraca

Vice President, Technology Product, Sun Life US

Melisa is Vice President Technology Product for Sun Life U.S. In this role, she leads the technology product and solutions strategy, serving Clients in the U.S. through product-driven practices, experience design and agile delivery.  

At Sun Life since 2007, Melisa has over 20 years of experience in technology and has a peripheral perspective on international technology trends. In the last two years she was responsible for Sun Life’s global Technology & Transformation Strategy and had accountability for the IT and transformation Strategy, the Digital Enterprise Center of Excellence, as well as defining and rolling out Global Value Realisation Office.    

She holds a bachelor’s degree in commerce, with a major in Management Information Systems and a minor in e-Commerce from the University of Concordia.   

Mara Reiff

Chief Customer Officer and Co-CEO, FreshBooks

As Co-CEO (Interim) and Chief Customer Officer, Mara leads FreshBooks with a strategic, customer-centric approach. Formerly an executive in the telecommunications industry, Mara brings a powerful blend of data-driven insight, technical skill, and business operations expertise to FreshBooks. One of IBM’s Global Women Leaders in AI, Mara holds an engineering degree in Applied Mathematics and Chemical Engineering, as well as an MBA. 

Joshi Roshni

Head of Banking and Expansion, North America, Wise

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Alexis Smirnov

Co-Founder and CTO, Dialogue

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Christopher Sweetland

VP, Global Head of Payment Markets & Partnerships, PayPal

Chris Sweetland serves as VP and Global Head of Payments Markets & Partnerships at PayPal. In this role, he oversees PayPal’s strategic partnerships with players across the banking, network and financial services industries. 
 
Prior to joining PayPal, Chris was a senior vice president and head of the Payments, Strategy & Transformation teams at CIBC, where he oversaw digital payments and the bank’s debit portfolios. He was also CIBC’s lead retail executive in support of its recently announced merchant acquiring business and CIBC’s market readiness for Open Banking. 

Prior to joining CIBC, Chris led the Industry Relations and Payments Operations & Partnerships teams at Square (now Block), where he was accountable for the organization’s most strategic industry relationships and led the in-market teams for Australia, Canada, Japan, Europe and the UK. Before joining Square, Chris led the Commerce Partnerships team at Google in support of mobile, in- app and online payments, building payment network and card issuer participation in Google Pay. Prior to Google, Chris was Vice President of Corporate Initiatives at Visa Inc. where he led business development and partnership engagement in the lead up and launch of the Visa Token Service (now Visa Digital Enablement Platform).  

Chris is a Board Member of the Electronic Transaction Association. He is also a Board Member and Director for Pollinate, a UK-based payment software firm focused on SMEs and enabling banks to deliver modern, merchant payment capabilities. Chris holds a B.A. in Economics from Colgate University. He's a former chapter President of the Omecron Delta Epsilon academic honor society. 

Darryl White

CEO, BMO Financial Group

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