Michelle Beyo is the CEO of FINAVATOR and who started her company two and a half years ago to help drive payment innovation and financial inclusion across North America. The Rhyze Up! participant said FINAVATOR is focused on bridging the gap between fintechs and traditional banks.
Beyo said her company helps organizations drive additional revenue through innovative marketing and strategic fintech partnerships that enable banks and credit unions to better service their customers. FINAVATOR has expertise in a variety of industries including fintech marketing, open banking, payments and prepaid solutions.
Participating in Rhyze Up! within a community of business owners all striving to grow, appealed to Beyo. She valued its unique structure compared to other Canadian programs that included working with a personal coach and business plan coach. “It helps the entrepreneur focus on their vision and business plan with the perspectives of others executives,” she said.
Hearing from women-led business owners in other sectors and from across Canada uncovering commonality within challenges such as funding and grants provided insight for her own business. Through the program she also learned to look at her business through a different lens, considering other angles to grow her business. The program helped spark new business strategies by leveraging outside thought on additional product offerings. Innovation Guelph also helped her to make connections with the US Trade Commissioner.
IG mentor George Staikos presented Beyo with four options to consider for growth. Beyo said It was an honor to receive insights from Staikos based on his expertise in both consulting as well as financial services. His business summary covered many different opportunities for FINNAVATOR including two that resonated well with the company’s growth plan. One approach leveraged FINAVATOR’s network and positioned it strategically in order to productize it, while the second approach aimed to provide a service that will widen FINAVATOR’s future customer base.
Beyo appreciated the leadership coaching she received as well. “Patricia Muir took a genuine interest in my work and her advice was on point which helped me focus on my long-term growth.” She also said the expertise provided by both mentors has been at the highest level of expertise. “They have helped me look at future growth in a more ambitious way.”
She recommends women-led business owners apply for Rhyze Up! “If they get the opportunity to work with Innovation Guelph, they can expand revenue by focusing on strategic planning which can lead to a greater trajectory of long-term growth,” Beyo said.