Online lender SoFi has named Twitter COO Anthony Noto chief executive officer, filling a position vacated by co-founder Mike Cagney, who left last year amidst allegations of sexual harassment at the firm.
Noto will take up his new role on 1 March, with interim CEO and executive chairman Tom Hutton becoming non-executive chairman.
SoFi started life as a student loan financing outfit but has been gradually expanding its range of services, acquiring mobile-only bank Zenbanx in February and launching a digital wealth management platform in May. Over the summer it applied for an industrial loan company charter with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation but quickly abandoned this in favour of a "partner-based approach" to new products.
The firm closed 2017 having reached new milestones across its business, cracking $25 billion in funded loans since inception and over 430,000 members.
But it also had a tough end to the year, with allegations of rampant bad behaviour and multiple lawsuits and sexual harassment allegations, leading to Cagney's exit.
With rumours of an IPO in the pipeline, Noto brings Wall Street experience, having spent nearly four years as co-head of global TMT investment banking at Goldman Sachs before joining Twitter, initially as CFO, in 2014.
"I’m grateful to the SoFi board for this extraordinary opportunity to lead one of the most important new companies at the intersection of technology and finance,” Noto says. “SoFi has a significant opportunity to build on its leadership position in student and personal loans to revolutionize consumer finance and build a next-generation financial services company."
The move could have an impact on another Silicon Valley fintech unicorn - Square. Noto was seen as a key factor in enabling Jack Dorsey to split his time between Twitter and Square. Yet, Noto is not expected to be replaced, with Twitter instead handing over his responsibilities to other members of the team.