Interview with Alexis Hamel: Forbes 30 under 30 in Finance

4 minutes read
James Bessenbach
By James Bessenbach
March 18, 2020
Interview with Alexis Hamel: Forbes 30 under 30 in Finance

At just 29 years of age, Alexis Hamel has taken the Berlin fintech scene by storm - and he shows no signs of slowing down. As the managing director of our newly established entity, solaris Digital Assets, he and his team are at the forefront of driving digital asset adoption in Europe. Now, his achievements have been recognized by the Forbes jury, who have voted him into the European „30 under 30 in Finance“ cohort of 2020, a new generation of leaders that are a step ahead in the way we think about finance. I sat down with him to chat about how his experiences have shaped him, and where he sees the financial world moving in the future.

Hey Alexis! First things first. Massive congratulations on this special achievement! What was the first thing that went through your head when you heard the news?

Thank you! I am super excited and feel honored to join this group. I believe that this is a great sign that we are on the right track with our team. This would certainly not have been possible without their amazing work and dedication.

You’ve had several different stations in your professional life. How do you think they influenced you in getting where you are today?

I have always had a fascination with the inner workings of the economy - how global markets function, how resources and capital are allocated and how value is created and exchanged. Therefore, I started my career in investment banking in London. It was a great school for the start of my career; I learned a lot and had some great mentors.

However, after three years on the job, I realized that the real innovation in the field was happening elsewhere. I saw that the key element that was going to radically transform the industry was technology. So, I decided to join a fintech start up in Berlin to gain a deeper understanding of new technologies, gain experience in product development and work in a smaller, execution driven team with an entrepreneurial mindset.

Through this experience, I later found the perfect opportunity to combine both my knowledge of capital markets with my product development expertise at solaris Digital Assets, the new subsidiary of solarisBank.

What is it that you do at solarisBank exactly?

In response to growing demand from businesses in the blockchain space looking for a licensed partner to deliver both a digital banking infrastructure and a custodian for their digital asset services, solarisBank launched solaris Digital Assets in December of 2019.

I am responsible for this new subsidiary, which has the mission of driving digital asset adoption. As a natural extension of solarisBank’s business model, solaris Digital Assets built a custodial solution for digital assets, intended to help blockchain businesses safekeep their customers’ digital assets. It’s a really exciting space with a lot of potential.

Some of my responsibilities at solaris Digital Assets are to create our product vision, ensure our execution and build a passionate team. We already have a fantastic cross-functional structure with talented engineers, product owners and regulatory & finance experts.

Here I can really live out my fascination to the fullest: enabling the frictionless exchange of value across the globe. I am convinced that blockchain technology and digital assets will have a transformative impact on the way exchange value, analogous to the way the internet revolutionized the way we exchange information.

What is your vision for the next 30 years of your professional life? What do you hope to achieve?

I hope to work alongside a team that is passionate and willing to go the extra mile to create something with a tangible, positive impact on society. I would be proud if I can claim to have played a part in transforming how we distribute value and capital globally and reduce our heavy reliance on inefficient, centralized parties.

What would you tell other aspiring young professionals looking to make a mark in the financial industry? Is there a recipe for success?

Try to get as much exposure as you can in tech, because that’s the environment that produces the skills most valuable in shaping the future of our industry. Our generation has a huge opportunity to leverage technology to make our global financial system more robust, transparent and efficient, so seize it!

Want to find out more about solaris Digital Assets? Read Alexis' Article on the launch of the new subsidiary!
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