I started my professional career journey 16 years ago with KPMG in Sofia. Since my student years I’d had a passion for numbers, and my accounting professor sparked an interest in the profession. I wanted to be involved in the financial services world.

I landed my first role as an auditor, initially at home and later in Malta. After I gained experience, I realised I wanted to further develop my professional potential by working directly in business, so I moved into several banking roles involving reporting, methodology and IFRS Standards implementation. Eight years ago, I joined Credissimo, a fintech business, as group CFO and board member.

Accounting firms are an excellent choice for a graduate starting their career. They are great places to receive a grasp of industry, gain experience and develop professional skills, following codes of conduct and getting a notion of the corporate world. But I decided I wanted to shape my professional journey in a more focused manner by joining a corporation. I wanted to see the pulse of the strategy, the successes and failures of the business and understand the impact that one can make to your ecosystem.

I wanted to see the pulse of the strategy, the successes and failures of the business

I am constantly leaving my comfort zone in my willingness to deliver better performance with my team and to find solutions to problems. I am empowered by challenges and have always had a passion to create things from scratch.

As part of a purely online business, recent years – especially during the Covid-19 pandemic – revealed the true value of digitalisation. We saw how online commerce and service offerings blossomed, and companies that invested in technology gained the greatest competitive advantage. The home office proved to management that the working processes didn’t stop; indeed, they even improved, as people felt the freedom to focus on achieving the results in the best way they could, developing their own efficiency and productivity.

If I had law-making powers, I would have focused efforts on financial inclusion initiatives, including more equal opportunities and offering of services. Sound financial education from earlier years is also worthy of attention.

What makes me passionate about my job is the freedom to challenge the status quo in financial services, the opportunities to drive and shape a sustainable business model, and the ability to take part in and contribute to an evolving fintech ecosystem. I feel grasping innovations and technology will pay off in the long term, evolving traditional functions like finance from the ‘back office’ to the heart of the modern business.

My biggest achievement is definitely the team that I have managed to recruit and develop. From only three people back in 2014, now my finance and accounting team has 15 highly talented professionals. We cover numerous business areas and there is hardly ever an obstacle we cannot handle.

If I weren’t a finance guy, I would have most probably become an artist. It is something that has been passed down through several generations of my family and is a gift to which I was dedicated in my childhood years. I faced a dilemma over whether to study art or business at university; I chose business, and I still believe that was the right path for me.

In my spare time I am very fond of travelling and exploring different cultures. I’m also a nature lover and passionate gardener.