July 21, 2024
Brex’s compliance head has left the fintech startup to join Andreessen Horowitz as a partner


Ali Rathod-Papier has stepped down from her role as global head of compliance at corporate card expense management startup Brex to join venture firm Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) as a partner and compliance officer, TechCrunch has exclusively learned.

Rathod-Papier and a16z declined to comment on the move.

According to her LinkedIn profile, Rathod-Papier now “oversees a16z’s foreign expansion and policy efforts, supporting the government affairs team, managing financial crime and national security risk, as well as overseas operations.” She was at Brex for a total of 2 ½ years, serving in a variety of roles including head of financial crime compliance before joining a16z in May.

Brex CFO Ben Gammell told TechCrunch that her departure was “amicable,” adding that Rathod-Papier “made invaluable contributions to financial management and compliance during her time at Brex” and that she helped position the startup “well for growth” in its next chapter.

Rathod-Papier shared the decision with colleagues in April, according to a Slack communication viewed by TechCrunch. A Brex spokesperson told TechCrunch this week that the startup is currently hiring a backfill for her role. In the meantime Bruce Wallace, a long-term advisor to Brex who has previously served as COO at Silicon Valley Bank and head of risk & fraud ops at Wells Fargo, has taken on the role of interim head of compliance.

The hiring comes at an interesting time for a16z, which had invested in Synapse, a banking-as-a-service startup which filed for bankruptcy in April and has since been under fire for an estimated $85 million worth of missing customer funds. The firm has been silent on the topic of the controversy around Synapse. TechCrunch spoke with a16z’s fintech leads and general partners Angela Strange and Anish Acharya in 2022 about the firm’s strategy in the space. The firm’s non-crypto high-profile fintech investments include Wise, Affirm, Deel and Greenlight, among others.

Meanwhile, TechCrunch also learned this week that Doug Adamic is no longer Brex’s chief revenue officer. The startup told us that Garrett Marker recently took his place as Brex’s new CRO. Marker most recently served as vice president of global sales at Braze, a cloud-based customer engagement platform for multichannel marketing.

Adamic had taken over as Brex’s CRO in May of 2022 after Sam Blond left, later joining Founders Fund as a partner, a role he ended up stepping down from earlier this year. Previously, Adamic had been with SAP Concur (a competitor of Brex’s) for over 16 years.

The moves come amidst an announcement by Brex that it has abandoned its co-CEO model with co-founder Pedro Franchesci becoming the sole CEO and co-founder Henrique Dubugras assuming the position of chairman of the board.

The pair told TechCrunch earlier this month that they believed that having two CEOs could be a bottleneck to the company’s growth by keeping its leadership from making faster decisions. They also feel like when Brex eventually does go public — something they don’t anticipate happening until 2025 or later — that investors will be more attracted to a traditional model of just one CEO running the company.

Interesting, in June 2023, Jason Mok, a former 16z operating partner, joined Brex as head of startups.

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