Fintech, or Financial Technology, is a term increasingly used in media and technology circles. It describes all things related to the emerging and changing financial services sector. Examples are innovations in retail banking, alternative lending and crypto-currencies like bitcoin. Despite it being such a hot topic, many people don’t quite have a handle on it or understand the meaning. Yet the industry behind Fintech is booming and attracted global investments of $17,4 billion in 2017 alone. Executive search firm Moorlands Human Capital, partner of the global Kennedy Executive Search & Consulting network, conducted a survey to determine what c-level talent in this industry are making. A total of 503 individuals from 500 businesses with revenues between $5 million and $5,3 billion were surveyed. All companies are based in either Asia Pacific, Europe or North America, where Kennedy Executive has partner offices.

CEO Compensation

A total of 137 CEO’s were surveyed about their total compensation per year and what amount was fixed and what amount was variable. Variable compensation included cash bonuses, long-term incentives awarded for that year, retirement provision and other benefits. The average base salary for a CEO in fintech business surveyed is $353,000. The lowest base salary reported was $93,350 and the highest $659,000. When looking at the total compensation, the lowest reported figure is $228,000. At the top end, the highest earning CEO brings home a total of $1,600,000. The average total compensation is $857,000.

CTO Compensation

The same was asked of a total of 90 CTO’s. With an average base salary of $215,000, they make considerably less then their boss. The lowest reported base salary for CTO’s is $85,000 and the highest $346,000, less than the average base salary for CEO’s. But it’s in the variables where CTO’s can add substantially to their base salaries. The average total compensation including all benefits is $521,000 with the lowest total compensation being $163,000 and the highest $844,000.

CFO Compensation

At $94,000, the basic compensation for a Chief Financial Officer at the bottom of the compensation chart compares with what their technical counterparts bring home. But the average and highest reported compensations are lower. On average, a CFO brings home a base salary of $158,000 and the highest reported figure is $221,000. To compare, this is only $6,000 more than the average base salaries for CTO’s. When it comes to total compensation, CFO’s in Fintech can make quite a difference with variables. But at $246,000, the average total compensation for a CFO is still more than half of what CTO’s bank on average. The lowest reported total compensation for a CFO is $147,000 and the highest $346,000. A total of 74 CFO’s were surveyed.

Sales & Marketing Director Compensation

Out of a total of 155 Sales and Marketing Directors, the lowest reported base salary was $77,000. But this rises to an average of $235,000, which is more than the highest reported base income for CFO’s. The highest reported base salary is $392,00, higher than the average for CEO’s and also higher than the highest totalcompensation for CFO’s. When looking at the variables, the lowest total compensation reported is $126,000. Interesting is the sudden rise to an average total compensation of $375,000. More striking is the highest reported total figure of $625,000 which is substantially higher than the reported highest total figure for CFO’s and nearing the reported totals for CTO’s and CEO’s. This disparity is due to the Sales & Marketing Director being rewarded for revenue generation.

HR Directors

When looking at the figures for those in charge of Human Resources, it shows they make less then their fellow board members, as is the case in most industries. The lowest reported at $66,000 is the lowest reported in the entire survey. With an average of $152.000 and the highest base salary reported at $225,000, an HR director’s can be compared to that of a CFO. But when it comes to total compensation, they are left behind slightly with an average total figure of $221,000. The lowest total is $105,000 which is also the lowest total reported, as is the highest total of $312,000 for an HR director. The obvious difference between the HR director and the rest of the senior executives is not uncommon in the financial services space. In Fintech its is almost certainly due to organisations focussing on product development and client acquisition rather than on strategic human capital management.

Paul Battye, owner of Moorlands Human Capital / Kennedy Executive United Kingdom: “This is the first time we have conducted and published this executive salary survey. We therefore have no historical data to compare the outcome against. However, it provides a good insight in the compensation of c-level executives in this booming industry. We can see that customer acquisition is valued highly by FinTech’s given the level of compensation paid to Sales and Marketing directors. It will be fascinating as the years go by to see if this phenomenon continues or if we see a harmonisation of compensation across the C-suite. In future years, we aim to be able to highlight the major trends in fintech c-lever salaries”.

Jorg Stegemann, CEO of Kennedy Executive: “Finance is a hugely inflectional industry. Since the great financial crisis, we have seen the real emergence of fintech as an industry in its own right. We at Kennedy are committed to helping organisations secure the best talent in the market and this research highlights our dedication to this fast growing sector.

A link to the full report and survey can be found here

About Moorlands Human Capital

Moorlands Human Capital is a boutique executive talent management consultancy focused on delivering innovative solutions tailored to meet our clients’ ever changing needs. We specialise in Board Appointments, Executive Assessment, Executive Research, Executive Search, Interim Management and Leadership Consulting. Moorlands Human Capital is proud partner of the Kennedy Executive network.

About Kennedy Executive Search & Consulting

Kennedy Executive Search & Consulting is a global partner network of retained search boutiques in Europe, Africa, North America and Asia Pacific with offices in Amsterdam, Budapest, Copenhagen, Denver, Frankfurt, Johannesburg, London, Milan, Monaco, Oslo, Paris, Prague, Sydney and Vienna. The network covers 360 degrees of talent management: direct search finds and assesses the right talent in the market; consulting develops people and organizations. As a network, Kennedy will run 365 strategic recruitments all over the world this year. Kennedy Executive Search & Consulting helps organizations to achieve their goals and people to enhance their careers every day.


Paul Battye: (+44) 0207 887 4534 /