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Highlights

 

Welcome to another episode of Category Visionaries — the show that explores GTM stories from tech’s most innovative B2B founders. In today’s episode, we’re speaking with Stephany Kirkpatrick, CEO and Founder of Orum, an API integration platform for instant payouts that aims to solve the “time to money” problem and empower a better financial system. The company has raised over $85 million in funding to date.

Key topics discussed in this episode:

  • Stephany’s background as the daughter of an immigrant, growing up in the Pacific Northwest with a love for the outdoors, and her journey from financial planner to tech entrepreneur.
  • The admiration for Brian Chesky, CEO of Airbnb, and his ability to build a visionary, flawless product while overcoming complex regulatory challenges and fostering a strong company culture.
  • The influence of books like “Essentialism” by Greg McKeown, which emphasizes the disciplined pursuit of less and the importance of focusing on the right things at the right time, both in business and personal life.
  • Orum’s origin story, rooted in Stephany’s experience as a financial planner, her desire to close the wealth gap and solve the “time to money” problem, and her realization that innovating the financial infrastructure could enable wholly new financial services products.
  • The company’s mission to be the simplest API integration for instant payouts, helping businesses deliver funds across various bank rails and optimize for speed, risk, and cost, while providing expertise and support.

Actionable
Takeaways

Address the Root Causes of Underrepresentation:

While there is increased intent to fund female-founded startups, Stephany believes that the lack of women in tech entrepreneurship stems from a deeper supply problem. To create generational change, we need to invest in exposing girls to STEM, computer science, and technology from an early age, enabling them to become future founders and leaders.

Build a Complete Solution Before Going to Market:

In the payments space, having a minimum viable product (MVP) is not enough. Customers need to experience a fully functioning solution before they are willing to switch providers. Focus on building a complete offering that demonstrates your unique value proposition and differentiates you from competitors.

Adapt Your Go-to-Market Strategy to the B2B Landscape:

Coming from a consumer background, Stephany had to learn and iterate on her approach to B2B sales and marketing. From creating compelling demos that showcase the customer experience to structuring flexible pricing models, founders need to continuously adapt to the needs of their target market.

Enable New Categories Through Infrastructure Innovation:

While Orum currently sits at the intersection of payments infrastructure and financial services infrastructure, the company's long-term vision is to enable entirely new categories of innovation by rewriting the underlying infrastructure layer. By solving fundamental constraints, they aim to empower their clients to build groundbreaking products and services.

Pursue a Vision of Empowerment and Inclusion:

Orum's ultimate goal is to power a better financial system where everyone has the freedom to build to their potential. By providing the scaffolding for a new financial infrastructure, they seek to inspire new habits and possibilities, embolden their partners and users, and create a more inclusive framework for financial services.

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