Thomas Benjamin Blomfield
11 August 1985
|Alma mater|| University of Oxford |
|Occupation||President of Monzo Bank (Left the business end of January 2021)|
Thomas Benjamin Blomfield(born 11 August 1985) is a British entrepreneur.
Blomfield grew up in Buckinghamshire and attended the selective Dr Challoner's Grammar School in Amersham.His first business was building a website for a local estate agent, whom Blomfield charged £250 for the webpage and £3 per house to be added upon receiving instructions.
He earned a degree in Law (Jurisprudence) from the University of Oxford.
While at Oxford, he received a £1,000 prize from a business plan competition organised by Oxford Entrepreneurs, proposing an "eBay for students" in 2004.Named Boso.com, it expanded to 50 universities across the UK, and Blomfield ran the company from 2004 until 2006. He told a reporter that the business struggled to raise money due to difficulties connecting with investors. Blomfield's two partners in the business went to Silicon Valley and went on the Y Combinator programme, however he did not attend due to university examinations. The business was sold to a Canadian company for "several million dollars" upon which it was remade into Auctomatic, a power selling tool for eBay users.
Blomfield then studied at Université Panthéon-Assas (Paris II) from 2005 to 2006, and returned to Oxford to study for a master's degree in Law from 2007 to 2008.[ citation needed ] He decided after a few internships with law firms that he did not want to become a lawyer.
Upon leaving Oxford, he first worked as an associate consultant at OC&C Strategy Consultants,working on "dog and cat food, baby car seats, frozen pizzas, debt collection, and one company that refurbished passenger airlines, plus a few pub chains".
Blomfield co-founded the UK-based company GoCardless in January 2011 with Hiroki Takeuchi and Matt Robinson.The company rose to prominence after receiving a £125,000 investment from Y Combinator. Blomfield stayed in Silicon Valley and during his three years at the company, it raised around £35 million of investment and hired 100 people. When GoCardless formally appointed Hiroki Takeuchi as CEO in 2013, he left (keeping a "very small share" in the £50-100m valued company) and moved to New York to work for dating site Grouper social club as their Head of Growth. Blomfield left Grouper in 2014, and it closed in 2016.
Blomfield first met former Allied Irish Banks and Royal Bank of Scotland banker Anne Boden around 2011, where the two reportedly discussed the idea of digital banking.However Blomfield was at first "reluctant" and "suspicious" of Boden's traditional banking connections.
On his return from Grouper in New York, Blomfield joined Boden at her company Starling Bankwhich was at that point one of the first digital banking companies. He departed in early 2015 after reports of disagreements at Starling, telling the Financial Times that "he could not comment under the terms of his departure".
In 2015, he founded challenger bank Monzo.In its first fundraising round, the company raised "£1 million in 96 seconds". As of 2019 the company was built on the "lean start up concept", operating with no branches and instead offering accounts online which cost the company "about £20 to £30 to provide".
In January 2020 his fellow founder, Paul Rippon, departed the company to spend time farming alpacas.In April, Blomfield announced he would forgo his salary for one year to help his company during the COVID-19 pandemic. In May, he announced that he was stepping down as CEO of Monzo and taking on the role of president of the company. In January 2021 he announced he was leaving the company permanently.
Blomfield was born in Buckinghamshire.His father was an entrepreneur, having set up an engineering company in his mid-30s. Blomfield spent his childhood learning programming languages, playing sport, and singing, though he was rejected by his school choir for being tone deaf and insensitive.
He spends his free time making pottery,and has travelled to east Africa including Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Zanzibar. He has been critical of the Silicon Valley business environment, calling it a "dystopia" due to its "wealth inequality and the lack of provision for homelessness and mental health".
In 2013, he was recognised as one of the top five entrepreneurs under 30 by the European Commission.
He was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2019 New Year Honours for services to Improving Competition and Financial Inclusion in the Banking Sector.[ citation needed ]
Stripe, Inc. is an Irish multinational financial services and software as a service (SaaS) company headquartered in Dublin, Ireland. The company primarily offers payment-processing software and application programming interfaces for e-commerce websites and mobile applications.
Oxford Entrepreneurs is an Oxford-based British student society which was founded in 2002 to encourage entrepreneurship among students at University of Oxford. It is the largest entrepreneurship society in Europe. Its alumni have founded some of Britain's most successful startups, including Monzo, GoCardless, Onfido, Quid, and PlinkArt.
Wise is a UK-based foreign exchange financial technology company founded by Estonian businessmen Kristo Käärmann and Taavet Hinrikus in January 2011. Wise specializes in cross-border payment transfer. As of 2023, it offers three main products: Wise Account, Wise Business, and Wise Platform.
Numbrs Personal Finance AG is a financial technology company based in Switzerland. The company offers an app called Numbrs that aggregates bank account and credit card information and facilitates mobile banking and personal financial planning.
Starling Bank is a British bank, occasionally referred to as a digital challenger bank or neobank, providing current and business bank accounts in the United Kingdom. Starling Bank is a licensed and regulated bank, founded by former Allied Irish Banks COO, Anne Boden, in January 2014. Since its founding, it has received over £500m of funding.
Wendy Tan White MBE is a British technology entrepreneur and technology investor. She is the CEO of Intrinsic, a robotics software company under Alphabet Inc.
Veem, formerly Align Commerce, is a San Francisco-based online global payments platform founded in 2014 by Marwan Forzley and Aldo Carrascoso. The company uses a payment routing method they refer to as "multi-rail technology," where transactions are routed through different methods, or "rails", such as credit cards, checks, or cryptocurrency.
Revolut is a global neobank and financial technology company that offers banking services. Revolut Bank UAB is licensed and regulated by the Bank of Lithuania within the European Union. Headquartered in London, it was founded in 2015 by Nikolay Storonsky and Vlad Yatsenko. It offers accounts featuring currency exchange, debit cards, virtual cards, Apple Pay, interest-bearing "vaults", stock trading, crypto, commodities, and other services.
Monzo Bank Limited is a British online bank based in London, England. Monzo was one of the earliest of a number of new app-based challenger banks in the UK.
Michael Seibel is a managing director at Y Combinator and co-founder of two startups – Justin.tv/Twitch and Socialcam. He first joined Y Combinator in 2013, advising hundreds of startups, and has been active in promoting diversity efforts among startup founders.
Challenger banks are small, recently created retail banks that compete directly with the longer-established banks in the UK, sometimes by specialising in areas underserved by the "big four" banks. As well as new entrants to the market, some challenger banks were created following divestment from larger banking groups or wind-down of a failed large bank.
Solaris SE is a credit institution licensed in Germany, with headquarters in Berlin and branches in London, Paris, Milan, Madrid and Vilnius.
Curve is a payment card that aggregates multiple payment cards through its accompanying mobile app, allowing a user to make payments and withdrawals from a single card. It lets you "switch the bank card you paid with after each transaction is complete." Curve named this feature "Back in time".
Brex Inc. is an American financial service and technology company that offers business credit cards and cash management accounts to technology companies. Brex cards are business charge cards, which require at least $50,000 in a bank account if professionally invested, if not with $100,000 to open, and cardholders who default won't damage their personal credit or assets. Emigrant Bank issues the Brex cards.
Anne Elizabeth Boden is a Welsh tech entrepreneur. She is the founder and former CEO of Starling Bank, a UK mobile-only bank, Boden is the first woman to found a British bank. In 2018, she received an MBE for services to financial technology.
Tide is a UK financial technology company providing mobile-first banking services for small and medium-sized enterprises. It enables businesses to set up a current account and get instant access to various financial services.
Freetrade is a UK-based financial technology company which offers a freemium share dealing service. The company was founded in 2016 and launched an iOS app in October 2018, followed by an Android version in April 2019. In October 2021 the company surpassed one million registered users, with quarterly trading volumes as of March 2021 of over £1 billion. As of November 2021 Freetrade has over £1 billion of assets under administration.
eFounders is a startup studio that designs, builds, and launches startups. It was founded in France and Belgium in 2011 by Thibaud Elziere and Quentin Nickmans. All startup ideas originate with the team, who then present to entrepreneurs and invite them to join eFounders in launching the startup. The firms is dedicated to developing B2B SaaS startups. Since their launch, they have e helped build 27 software startups.
Shola Akinlade is a Nigerian software engineer and entrepreneur. He is the co-founder and CEO of Paystack, the company that was acquired by Stripe in 2020 for $200m.
GoCardless is a fintech company that specialises in bank payments including recurring payments, Direct Debit processing and Open Banking. GoCardless is headquartered in London.