Jan 17 • 29M

Aron Schwarzkopf, CEO of Kushki - Ecuador's First Unicorn, Hidden Benefits of a Digital Economy, & Why We Should Get Rid of Cash

Miguel Armaza sits down with Aron Schwarzkopf, CEO & Co-Founder of Kushki, one of the largest digital payments companies in Latin America and the first Ecuadorian unicorn.

Open in playerListen on);
Episode details

This article is part of Fintech Leaders, a newsletter with 50,000+ dreamers, entrepreneurs, investors, and students of financial services. I invite you to share and sign up! And, if you enjoy this conversation, please consider leaving a review on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your shows so more people can learn from it.


In this episode, I head down to sunny Miami for the Fintech Nexus LatAm Conference, where I sit down with Aron Schwarzkopf, CEO & Co-Founder of Kushki, one of the largest digital payments companies in Latin America that’s helping companies across the region digitize their payments under a single integration.

Founded in 2017, Kushki now operates across most of Spanish-speaking Latin America, was last valued at $1.5 billion and has raised almost $200 million in equity capital from Kaszek, Softbank, Clocktower, DILA, and many more.

Join the Fintech Leaders Job Board – whether you’re looking for a job or just exploring.

Are you looking to jumpstart your career in the exciting world of fintech? Or maybe you’re trying to break into the banking world? Check out our brand new Fintech Leaders job board. The perfect place to find your dream job or meet that ideal candidate you’ve been looking for.

Check Out The Best Jobs in Fintech

Some of the companies actively hiring include Square, Stripe, Revolut, Wise, Affirm, and many more. It’s FREE for candidates, and companies can get their first month off with discount code “FTLFreeMonth” throughout the month of January.

Why wait? You’ve heard and read our interviews with the best Fintech Leaders, how about you join them and start building the future of financial services!

To The Fintech Leaders Job Board!

In this episode, we discuss:

Societal benefits of a digitized economy, and how digital payments can reduce corruption and increase the velocity of a market

“The concept of being able to move your money with a single click or storing it from a digit-to-digit and just moving it really fast, makes economies much faster, right? And that has a ridiculous amount of macro-economic benefits as well.”

Working with financial regulators across the region and why he sees evidence that regulators understand the benefits of fintech and is optimistic for the future of the industry

“As a whole, I think regulators understand that this is a precursor to many other things. And they understand that the status quo was great for the 90s and maybe early 2000s, but needs to change and evolve, right? ... we are evidence that the regulators are moving towards that trend positively.”

Growing the company from zero to 1,000 people and some of the biggest lessons learned along the way

“One of the big misconceptions of the investment community that's in the northern hemisphere, is they feel that in a [US] bear market, there's a bear market in Latin America, right? And we're used to having bear markets all the time. We're complaining on the Wall Street Journal here about inflation – it’s just another Tuesday in Latin America."

What it means to be the first Ecuadorian unicorn and why he hopes to inspire more entrepreneurs to follow his path… and a lot more!

“In the end, nations are not important, in my opinion, for companies. It’s about performance and talent… We love speaking with other entrepreneurs from smaller countries in Latin America, they're like, ‘How did you do it?’ - I don't know. I didn't do anything different, but you can do it too!”

Want more podcast episodes? Join me and follow Fintech Leaders today on Apple, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app for weekly conversations with today’s global leaders that will dominate the 21st century in fintech, business, and beyond.

Previous Episodes You May Enjoy:

Secrets to Managing Your Board of Directors - From Board Members of Nubank, Acorns, dLocal, Justworks, Upgrade, XP, Alibaba, & More Global Titans

Steve McLaughlin, Founder of FT Partners – 2023 Predictions, Making Sense of the Global Fintech Market, & Valuable Founder Advice

Medha Agarwal, Partner at Redpoint Ventures – Doubling Down on Fintech Investing, Modernizing the CFO Tech Stack, & The Power of Content Creation

Latif Peracha, General Partner at M13 - The Future of Money, Investing Frameworks, & Lessons From Working With Richard Branson

General Atlantic’s Martín Escobari – Three Traits of the Best Entrepreneurs, 42 years of Global Investment Lessons & How the Regret Minimization Framework Changed his Life

Katlego Maphai, Yoco CEO/Co-Founder – Building a South African Digital Giant, Empowering Small Businesses, & Founder Lessons to Overcome Adversity

Matan Bar, CEO/Co-Founder of Melio – Always Remember to Keep The Main Thing, The Main Thing

Mike Cagney, Founder of Figure & SoFi – Building Massive Transformational Companies, Key Founder Lessons, & How Blockchain is Revolutionizing Financial Services

Video Highlights You Will Definitely Like:

Miguel Armaza is Co-Founder & Managing General Partner of Gilgamesh Ventures, a seed-stage investment fund focused on fintech in the Americas. He also hosts and writes the Fintech Leaders podcast and newsletter.