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Like most startups, Uphold is moving at a rapid pace. We are working to enhance and bring new features to our product, signing new partners and opening services in new markets. While we have thousands of members in 174 countries currently using Uphold, we thought it is important to highlight the people and faces behind our brand — those that are working around the clock to bring our vision to life.

Today, we are kicking off the Faces of Uphold, a blog series which will introduce our team members from around the world in a fun and casual get-to-know you style interview. We believe this series is the perfect way to further our vision of reimagining the world of finance through transparency.

To start the series we would like to introduce, Jeff Pietras, VP of Payments


What attracted you to Uphold?

A return to my startup roots and the great Uphold team. The disruptive but inclusive nature of what Uphold is trying to develop in the changing financial services space. I like companies that bridge technology solutions with consumer problems (especially those addressing presently underserved consumers and/or businesses) and which have a scalable solution for both developed and emerging markets.

What has been the biggest success of yours since starting at Uphold?

Helping the Growth & Partnerships team to define a strategic roadmap of priorities for 2016, such as new use cases for Uphold, payment methods for onboarding and offboarding funds, new markets to enter, strategic partnerships, etc. As a startup, we are constantly chasing up new opportunities, but at this stage in our development, I really want to bring focus and align all the activities that really matter to drive toward success.

What is one fun fact people might not know about you?

I was scouted by casting agents in my younger 20’s and had a few experiences with TV and movie pilots. But it really wasn’t my scene, so I stayed the course in the business world.

What has been the biggest surprise of working with Uphold?

The passion that everyone shares for the work we are doing and the trust we build in each other to get things done. These are two aspects that I find most important in a company but characteristics not often found in every startup – so great to see this solid foundation already at Uphold!

How would you describe Uphold to a friend or family member?

Uphold is a new way to save, convert, or pay whether cross-border or domestically – without the burdensome processes and costs of traditional financial service providers.

What are your thoughts on being a globally dispersed team?

It’s a huge advantage if you learn how to capitalize on it – having the right people in the right places that build trust, execute quickly and collaborate via technology is a smarter, leaner and more effective way to scale a global business versus centralized bureaucracy

What is your favorite quote?

The proverb: “A chain is only as strong as its weakest link.”

What is the one thing you cannot live without?

Coffee

What is the first app you open in the morning?

Various global news apps (BBC, Guardian, LeMonde) to get a good read on stories not covered by traditional U.S. media.

If you are active on social media, where can readers connect with you?

Feel free to connect with me on Linkedin!

Related blog posts: Uphold appoints Jeff Pietras as VP of Payments