Valentina Kristensen

Director, Growth & Communications, ACORN OakNorth, a unicorn fintech firm

Valentina is the Director of Growth & Communications for ACORN OakNorth, a unicorn fintech firm focused on unlocking the potential in bespoke SME lending globally using its data and technology platform, ACORN machine. In the UK, the firm operates as OakNorth – a challenger bank that serial entrepreneurs, Rishi Khosla and Joel Perlman, founded in September 2015 to address the mid-market funding gap. Valentina leads the corporate communications strategy, helping to take the brand from pre-launch and a loan book of £0, to where it is today – a business with a £1bn loan book and a valuation of c.$1.3bn.

She is an Accredited Member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) and in 2015, won the Institute’s Outstanding Young Communicator Award. She is also the Chair and a founding editorial board member of Influence Magazine, a quarterly publication focused on the people and processes that are changing the way we communicate. She is a regular fintech commentator having appeared on well-known podcasts such as Fintech Insiders and at numerous events throughout the year.