Danish FinTech Pleo had appointed Meri Williams as its new chief technology officer. 

The company says the appointment marks Pleo’s continued investment in helping small to medium-sized businesses leave the pains of old-fashioned financial processes behind and achieve real-time oversight on company spending – especially relevant at a time of economic uncertainty for many businesses. 

Williams’ appointment follows that of Abigail Slater who joined from American Express to become Pleo’s new head of operations in the UK&I in October. 

Williams joins Pleo’s senior leadership team after previously working at AI-driven rare disease treatment discovery company Healx. 

With experience across a range of team sizes and organisations, Williams’s specific knowledge of the FinTech sector came as CTO at mobile-first challenger bank Monzo where she helped scale the technology team by 300% and led significant investment in platform resilience and business continuity as Monzo’s customer base grew to over four million.

Also a published author and international speaker, she is the chair of The Lead Developer conference which since its inception in 2015, has expanded to London, New York, Berlin and San Francisco.

An active supporter of better representation within technology roles, Meri and her wife Elly sponsor scholarships to help more girls start STEM careers in her hometown of Stellenbosch, South Africa, through micro-charity One Goes Up, as well as Arts scholarships and Women in Technology scholarships at The University of Bath. 

She also serves as a board trustee for Stonewall, the UK’s leading LGBTQ+ rights charity. 

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“I’ve been incredibly impressed by Pleo’s journey over the past few years, from a disruptor in the business spend management market to an essential platform of choice for thousands of enterprises across Europe,” said Williams. 

“Now, the organisation has expanded again to become a vital lifeline for thousands of businesses across Europe. The excitement of this journey is in how, along with the Pleo team, I can continue the company’s journey into becoming an indispensable partner during a time of economic uncertainty and trepidation. 

“I am thrilled to be joining this first-class team that inspired me in every interaction thus far.” 

Nicco Perra, co-founder at Pleo, commented:  “We are delighted to have Meri join the Pleo team. She brings a wealth of industry experience to Pleo and Meri’s background in utilising technology and data insights to generate value for companies aligns perfectly with Pleo’s growth plans – as well as our continued role in helping businesses gain greater control and visibility over their spending.  

“As a valued voice for LGBTQ+ rights and the role of women in technology, and as well as rapidly scaling technology organisations, Meri has simultaneously improved teams’ diversity, inclusion, and ways of working. 

“This fits with Pleo’s determination to foster workplaces, including its own, based on belonging, where everyone feels valued. Meri will be an incredible force for us and the companies we work with.” 

Since February 2021, Pleo has expanded into six new markets in Europe, and in the past year, users on the platform have doubled, while transaction volumes have tripled. 

Hello Fresh and E.ON Next are among the names relying on Pleo’s platform to help simplify their finance processes. This momentum comes off the back of Pleo reaching unicorn status in 2021, when it raised $350 million in Series C funding. The business is valued at $4.7 billion, making it one of the most valuable FinTech startups.

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