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How much is a FinTech CEO worth?

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Good question, and it all depends on the revenue forecast. However, if you want to get an idea, a new survey from Moorlands Human Capital, an executive recruitment search and consulting company, has a view. That’s because they asked 500 FinTech companies how much they pay the CEO? And it wasn’t just how much they pay the CEO, but also the CFO, CTO, HR head and more. Here’s a summary of the results:

500 FinTech firms were surveyed from May 1 to July 31 this year. The firms had wide ranging revenue streams, starting from as small as $5 million and rising to $5.3 billion for the largest. The data requested was for the calendar year 2017 and all currencies were converted to US dollars at the exchange rates prevailing on December 28, 2017.

137 CEOs responded with their salary packages and the lowest paid CEO got $93,350 for 2017; the highest was paid $659,000; and the average was $353,000. Obviously, the salaries increased in accordance with revenues, and this is true across all of the firms.  However, with all retirement options and other benefits, their total compensation amounted to $228,000 for the lowest paid CEO; $1.6 million for the highest paid; and an average of $857,000.

74 CFOs took the survey, and the lowest paid CFO received a salary of $94,000 ($750 more than the CEO!); the highest paid got $221,000 ($438,000 less than the CEO!); and the average is $158,000 ($70,000 lower than the CEO). Total compensation was similar less with $147,000 at the low end; $346,000 at the top; and $246,000 average.

90 CTOs replied and had salaries starting at $85,000 and peaking at $346,000, with an average of $215,000. Total compensation started at $163,000, rising to a peak of $844,000 and averaging $521,000 (beating those darned CFOs).

HR directors fared less well with starting salaries of $66,000, rising to $221,000 and averaging $152,000.

Sales and Marketing Heads start at $77,000 a year, peaking at $392,000, and averaging $235,000.

If you want a copy of the report, then you can get it over here.

My take on it is that it shows how firms prioritise their people. The leader is the CEO, so he or she is worth the most. As a tech firm, the CTO is the second most valued team member. Managing money is critical for fledgling firm, so the CFO is the third highest ranked. Then you need some sales, so the sales and marketing person gets a nod. Then hiring people is lowest on the list, so let’s put HR last.

It makes me realise why the Global HR Head at one of the firms I used to work for said: “you know Chris, to head up HR in most firms, you really have to hate people”. Now I know why.


Chris Skinner Author Avatar

Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog,, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal's Financial News. To learn more click here...

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