18 May 2023 |

Uncovering Asian Excellence In Fintech: 5 Inspiring Stories


The Humans of Fintech podcast has highlighted the achievements of Asian Excellence in fintech throughout 5 seasons. 

As the host and fellow AAPI, I’ve been fortunate to interview an impressive list of fintech leaders whose stories are truly inspiring. 

From entrepreneurs to investors to thought leaders, I’ve had the opportunity to speak with a diverse group of guests and build a fantastic community dedicated to helping each other succeed. 

Each story is unique and provides valuable insight into the world of fintech and the Asian narrative in this industry. So, without further ado, here are some of the best stories from the Humans of Fintech podcast, Asian Excellence edition.

#1 Rewriting the Asian American Narrative in Fintech, with Liang Zhao 

Did you know 1 in every 124 Asian women in the workplace is a leader vs. 1 in every 50 white males?

Liang Zhao, CEO of the marketing consulting agency, Vansary, does, and that’s why she’s making it her mission to ensure underrepresented groups have an equitable seat at the leadership table.

Liang sits down to speak with me about what her experience as an Asian American has been like in the fintech space, including why the culture of internalization has made it difficult for Asian Americans to recognize when they’re being shortlisted and how fintech needs to work harder to build a more inclusive and sustainable future.

Plus, find out how Vansary is working with female founders, minority-owned businesses, and allies within the financial sector to help underrepresented groups find their leadership voice. 

#2 Representing the Communities Fintech Serves with Helen Min

If you’re creating a fintech product that serves everyone but doesn’t have people building it who represent the groups you’re trying to help, how do you ever expect it to succeed? 

I talk with Phenomenal Ventures’ Co-Founder, Helen Min, about her thoughts on fintech’s biggest problems, including the lack of representation for women within the fintech community. 

She also shares why you should double down on telling your brand’s story through consistent messaging and explains why verticalized fintech applications are something to get excited about. 

#3 Empowering Women Against Bro Culture With Michelle Tran

Michelle Tran is building a community, meeting fintech bro culture head-on. Find out why she will no longer be talked over. 

Michelle Tran is the Head of Enterprise Sales and SVP at Vestwell, a platform working to close the savings gap. She’s also the Founder of NYC Fintech Women and Dreamers // Doers, a collaboration and mentorship community. 

Michelle and I get into her inspiring family story of immigration in challenging circumstances, why she’s determined to keep giving back, and the aha moment when she found herself talked over at a pitch meeting, triggering her mission to create a supportive community and mentoring other women in fintech.

#4 Moving the Needle Through Trust with Meg Nakamura

You don’t get a hall pass for making mistakes with people’s money. 

Meg Nakamura is the Co-founder and CEO of building trust through Fintech. Find out how via her work with Apto Payments, the next-generation card and payment platform that helps companies design and launch successful card programs as fast as a day. Meg and Co-founder Greg Kidd are building a company with community and trust at its core. 

Meg and I talk about how her Japanese upbringing influenced her approach to business, why you only get one chance to handle people’s finances, and what it’s like to keep your company afloat in the face of challenges.

#5 Bringing Equity to Credit Invisible Customers with Kristy Kim 

Earlier this year, I spoke with Kristy Kim, the founder of TomoCredit, a fintech company offering a unique consumer credit card designed to close racial and gender wealth gaps by helping those without traditional credit histories access capital. 

Kristy is a South Korean immigrant who shared how she addressed her credit issues, established her company, and emphasized the importance of having a sense of humor in life.