Internationally diverse group includes academic, political and financial leaders
EDWARDSVILLE, Ill.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#banking—ePlata – the only app to offer all of the capabilities of worldwide banking without the need for a traditional bank account – today introduced its diverse global board of directors. The new members’ expertise ranges from international diplomacy to venture capital.
They join Jeff Cooper, ePlata’s founder and CEO, to help shape the company’s global footprint. Cooper founded ePlata as a multi-currency, multi-balance digital wallet that provides banking solutions to billions of underserved people worldwide, including those who lack access to traditional banking services.
“Our board’s background demonstrates as much care for ethics and social justice as for business excellence, with experience in developing resources for underserved communities. As fervent about fair trade and equal rights as they are about entrepreneurship, our board members’ influence will help us share the benefits of ePlata with as many companies and individuals as possible,” Cooper said.
Vuk Jeremić, President of the Center for International Relations and Sustainable Development (CIRSD)
The youngest person ever to be elected president of the UN General Assembly (67th Session), Jeremić was the runner-up in the election for UN Secretary-General in 2016, finishing in second place behind Antonio Guterres after six rounds of voting by the UN Security Council. More than two decades ago, he began his public career as a pro-democracy student activist in his native Serbia, before going on to serve as a presidential adviser and foreign minister for eight years. During his tenure as Serbia’s chief diplomat, Jeremić chaired the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers in 2007-2008 and helped secure his country’s official candidate status for membership in the European Union. Jeremić holds a bachelor’s degree in Theoretical and Experimental Physics from Cambridge University (UK) and a master’s degree in Public Administration/International Development from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. In 2013, Jeremić was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. He also served as the president of the Serbian Tennis Federation from 2011 to 2015. Currently, he is president of CIRSD, a global public policy think-tank, and a member of the LIFE International Advisory Council of Partners Group, Europe’s leading private equity firm.
Miguel Alemán Magnani, President and CEO of Interjet
Magnani is regarded as one of the most progressive and dynamic people in Mexican business. With expertise in transportation, communications and real estate, he serves as the president and executive chairman of Mexican airline Interjet, as well as chairman of Grupo Alemán (Galem). Magnani is a partner of the Discovery Americas fund and he has been the president of Grupo Casa Saba S.A. de C.V. since 2009. He is also co-founder and co-president of Gato Grande Productions, a joint venture with MGM, that develops and produces high-quality Spanish-language entertainment, and a director of Grupo TMM. Magnani is the son of Galem president Miguel Alemán Velasco and grandson of former Mexican president Miguel Alemán Valdés (1946-1952).
Marisa Marquez, Partner at FORMA Group
A Texas native and former member of the Texas House of Representatives, Marquez’ popularity unseated the longest-serving Latino elected official in the U.S. At the age of 27, she was the first female to represent her district in the Texas Legislature and the second Latina from her home county. Her accomplishments include the creation of the only statewide county ethics commission, leading housing standards reform, funding the inaugural University of Texas at El Paso Pharmacy School and the “third building” of the Paul Foster School of Medicine at Texas Tech University. Following her political term, Marquez became a partner at FORMA Group, where she currently provides strategic communications for companies and agencies working with local and state governments.
Chip Poncy, President and Co-Founder, Financial Integrity Network (FIN)
Poncy is president and co-founder of FIN, a premier strategic advisory firm assisting governments, financial institutions, technology companies and other clients define, design and strengthen their financial integrity. He is also a senior advisor for the Foundation of Defense of Democracies’ Center on Economic and Financial Power. Before launching FIN, Poncy served as the interim head of Financial Crimes Compliance for Mexico and the Latin American region for HSBC. From 2002-2013, he served as the inaugural director of the Office of Strategic Policy for Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes (OSP) and a senior advisor at the U.S. Department of the Treasury. While director of OSP (2006-2013), Poncy led an office of policy advisors, creating policies and initiatives to combat the full spectrum of illicit finance, including money laundering, terrorist financing, WMD proliferation financing and kleptocracy flows. During the post-9/11 government reorganization, Poncy was a senior advisor (2002-2006), helping Treasury leadership develop the U.S. government’s post-9/11 strategy to combat terrorist financing, and assisted in creating the Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence. Poncy led the U.S. delegation of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) (2010-2013), co-chaired FATF’s policy working group (2007-2013), and managed U.S. participation on various G7, G8 and G20 illicit finance expert groups (2008-2013).
Bo Bernhard, Ph.D., Executive Director of International Gaming Institute, University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV)
By age 30, Bernhard had given lectures about his research on six continents and completed a double-major thesis at Harvard University on the community impacts of the gaming industry. Earning a doctorate and dual professorship in hotel management and sociology, Bernhard became the first research director at the UNLV International Gaming Institute in 2002. In 2011, he was named executive director of UNLV’s International Gaming Institute, overseeing the largest academic center of its kind in the world, and leading a multi-disciplinary team of more than 30 experts in the global gaming-hospitality-tourism sector. He has delivered more than 200 keynote talks across the globe and his work has been published in the top business and social science journals. Bernhard has directed $10+ million in grant-funded research projects, his efforts earning him multiple awards.
Xin Wang, Managing Partner at BHR Equity Investment Fund Management Company
Formally based in Beijing but with work taking her all over the world, Wang has extensive experience advising both Chinese businesses and foreign financial institutions. She is known for strategically guiding companies on multibillion-dollar global transactions and acquisitions. Wang has helped close many successful business deals, including advising the China Development Bank in a number of high-profile financial endeavors. Wang is a licensed attorney in the State of California, and solicitor in England and Wales.
Enrique Gonzalez, CEO of IP Ventures, Inc.
The Philippines-based business magnate has developed a series of successful internet startups, including founding IPVG (now named IP Ventures, Inc.), one of the leading IT conglomerates in the Philippines. His expertise in digital and finance markets enabled him to grow a variety of prosperous ventures, including data centers, online gaming, internet services, payments and remittances, and retail. Throughout his career, he has held pivotal roles at several publicly listed corporations: chairman of IP-Converge Data Center; director at Arthaland Corp.; CEO and managing director of IP-EGames (EG); and a former leading shareholder and director of Prolexic, a top DDOS Mitigation company based in the U.S. After founding IP Ventures in 2005, where he remains CEO, Gonzalez became a partner at SoftBank affiliate, Kaikaku Fund.
Jeff Cooper, Founder and CEO of ePlata
A respected serial entrepreneur, Cooper has cultivated many successful businesses. During his tenure (2000-2008) as managing partner of SimmonsCooper LLC – a law firm specializing in litigation from asbestos to international financial suits – Cooper led the company’s explosive growth, building one of North America’s largest law firms. In 2008, he migrated from the legal sector to found pioneering portfolio management corporation, Eudora Global. Incubating companies that harness innovative technologies, Eudora has facilitated numerous industry breakthroughs: financial technology and lifestyle solutions provider, Atomic 47; pharmacy benefit management and claims processor, Citizens Rx; specialty pharmaceutical distributor, Praxis Rx; film and television production company, LMG Studios; global radio streaming service, Yo Radio; and esports brand, Ultimate Gaming Championship. In addition to his role as founder and CEO of ePlata, Cooper is chairman of the board at Eudora Global, chairman and CEO of Atomic 47 and Lineup Media Group, and a board member and co-founder of Citizens Rx.
ePlata is a subsidiary of Atomic 47, a portfolio of companies providing financial, healthcare and lifestyle solutions. ePlata uses proprietary technology to deliver digital banking services to the world – a groundbreaking product set to enter a territory unchartered by competitors, servicing the 4.9+ billion people who do not have, or cannot receive financial approval for, a bank account. Available for download on iOS and Android smartphones, ePlata is an FDIC-insured, international financial lifestyle product.
Callie de Quevedo: CdeQuevedo@eplata.com