Oliver began his career in technology in Johannesburg, moving to Germany in the mid 80's. After working in the software industry he moved into Financial Services in the late 90’s.
At First Data International he worked across mutliple companies in Europe and moved back to South Africa in 2007 to run an ATM business.
Prior to starting his relationship with Apis, Oliver was a Director at the London based FinTech advisory firm Anthemis, supporting M&A projects through due diligence and doing payments advisory for banks and retailers across Europe.
As well as consulting with the Apis Funds over their technology due diligence for potential investments, Oliver has advised several of our portfolio companies on their strategy and technology plans, including being seconded full-time to Microcred (Baobab) for over two years and currently working with several more investees.
Married and father of 3 girls in their 20’s, he lives in a cattery (his wife Cherylee breeds Siberian cats) and goes trout fishing and scuba diving when the opportunity arises.
Areas of expertise
Payments, Cloud Computing, Technology Platforms, Software Development, Support & Operations
What is the most important lesson you have ever learned?
My most important lesson in life is to never assume. My favourite saying is that ‘To assume makes an ASS out of U and ME’, which I used as a mantra with my management teams. More time and money are wasted and frustration created by making assumptions than anything else I know of.
What is your favourite city? and why?
My favourite city is Cape Town, where I will be relocating to in 2019. It is surrounded by raw nature, wedged between the ocean and Table Mountain and has the most amazing micro-climates. Big enough to be classed as a city, yet small enough not to get lost in, it is a foody paradise and wine drinker’s heaven.
How did your background prepare you for a role at Apis?
Being the technologist at Apis and doing the technical and operational due diligence for many opportunities, my background in IT and Financial Services and most recently 5 years in financial advisory, made this a perfect fit for me. A lot of international travel is as much part of this as is extreme flexibility and multitasking.
Why work with Growth Markets?
My passion lies in bringing Financial Services to Growth Markets, specifically Africa, that I have a special affinity for. Without the availability and ability to move money, entrepreneurs struggle to get started or expand. The problem is that Financial Services rely on an eco-system, parts of which are missing or only just getting started in many countries. Eco-systems need a lot of capital to be developed, which is where companies like Apis can and does play a significant role.