Berlin-based banking-as-a-service platform Solarisbank is launching a "women's network" dedicated to closing the gender gap in the fintech industry.
Fintech's gender gap is well established, with a recent study finding that just 1.5% of global firms in the sector are founded solely by women. These female-founded firms receive just one per cent of total fintech funding. Meanwhile, women make up barely 11% of all board members and 19% of company executives at private fintech firms.
The gap is also reflected in pay: just this week, under UK legal requirements, fintech giant Revolut revealed women earn 25.2% (median) and 22.7% (mean) less than men, on the basis of hourly pay. Last year, Monzo posted similar figures.
Solarisbank is seeking to tackle the issue with its new 'Futura' network as part of its holistic NPB (Nature, People, Business) framework.
Already up and running, Futura is currently focused on organising events — from discussion panels, to training events and empowerment days — where women considering a career in fintech can hear from, learn, and network with women already working in the field.
While an industry project, Solarisbank says Futura is also having a company effect, with the firm making its recruitment process more inclusive by simplifying job ads, adapting the language and asking recruitment agencies to reach a minimum quota of female applicants.
The company has set itself the target of boosting representation within Solarisbank to at least 30% women at all levels by 2024.
Layla Qassim, chief of staff to Group CEO, Solarisbank, says: "Eventually, diversity and inclusion benefit everyone. With Futura, we hope to prove this to the industry and create a blueprint for them to follow."