In 2008, Tim Chen was one of hundreds of Wall Street professionals who found themselves jobless in the aftermath of the credit crisis. Chen, then an analyst at a hedge fund, wanted to pursue an entrepreneurial path but was unsure about how to embark on it. As luck would have it—or by serendipity, if you will—his sister asked him which credit card would offer low FX fees.
It took a while for Chen to put together the information she requested, because he quickly realized there was a lack of transparency. That’s when Chen knew he had a business idea – provide a platform to help people make educated financial decisions. NerdWallet didn’t take off immediately though.
“It still seemed like lunacy to go and do this startup thing relative to doing the sure thing, but it was showing just enough early traction that I was thinking ‘this thing could work,’” he recalled to CNBC.
Today, NerdWallet is a public company and continues to grow and provide consumers and SMBs with trustworthy and knowledgeable financial guidance. The keys to success, Chen has said, is being obsessively customer focused and being on the cutting edge by constantly innovating and improving.
“If we focus on doing what’s right, maybe we can build a relationship with a person, so they come back, time and time again,” he said.
Chen will join the HBS Club of NY for a wide-ranging conversation and share tips on how everyone can improve their personal finance.
Participants must register by Noon on June 27th to receive details on joining the discussion. The Zoom link will be sent out 24 hours before the event.
Please note that no refunds will be issued.
CEO of NerdWallet
Tim Chen, CEO of NerdWallet, co-founded the personal finance company in 2009 after working on Wall Street and realizing there isn’t much transparency when it comes to financial decisions. As CEO, Chen sets the strategic vision for NerdWallet and is determined to give consumers clarity around all of life’s financial decisions. In addition to leading NerdWallet toward its ambitious vision, Tim sits on the board of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC). Before founding NerdWallet, Tim was a hedge fund analyst at Perry Capital investing in payment processing firms, credit card networks and technology companies. He also worked as an equity analyst at Credit Suisse First Boston. Tim has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Stanford University.
Chitra Nawbatt is the Global Head of Health Assurance Partnerships at General Catalyst, a leading global venture capital firm. She drives ecosystem business development and go-to-market access to orchestrate, structure and commercialize strategic partnerships for General Catalyst and its many portfolio companies. She also researches new investment theses driven by market and stakeholder forward strategies. Chitra’s unique multi-industry and multidisciplinary expertise powers her role as a business builder across General Catalyst and its portfolio companies.
Previously, Chitra was a growth strategist as the Global Head of Market Solutions at Genpact, an artificial intelligence and digital transformation consulting firm. Prior to that, Chitra was the New York based Anchor for Reuters TV where her live broadcasts were seen by millions across the world. Chitra spent more than a decade in financial services and was a C-level leader at Deutsche Bank. Her career started at EY. Chitra has a CPA designation, and is a graduate of Harvard Business School and University of Toronto.
You can reach her on twitter @chitranawbatt.
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