FinTech Australia Announces 2021 Finnies Award Winners

Women founders and executives from BrightePaypa Plane, Athena Home Loans and Adatree are among the biggest winners of the sixth annual FinTech Australia Finnie awards.

For the first time in the award’s history, women have taken out all of the top industry awards. Katherine McConnell, CEO and co-founder of Brighte, and Simone Joyce, CEO and founder Paypa Plane, jointly won the Outstanding Fintech Leader of the Year Award which for the first time has also been won by women.

Jill Berry, CEO and co-founder of Adatree was named Emerging Fintech Leader of the Year and Natalie Dinsdale, CMO of Athena Home Loans, was awarded Female Fintech Leader of the Year. Brighte also took home the Best Workplace Diversity Award.

In a departure from previous awards, fewer fintechs won multiple awards in 2021. Athena Home Loans took home a total of three awards — Excellence in Consumer Lending, Fintech Organisation of the Year and Female Fintech Leader of the Year. Onboarding and detection platform FrankieOne won two awards — Emerging Fintech Organisation of the Year and Excellence in RegTech.

In addition, Afterpay and Airwallex, long-running winners of the Finnies, were the inaugural inductees into the Finnies Hall of Fame recognising their sustained success.

This year marks the biggest Finnies awards to date. There were over 288 entries for a total of 23 awards, including two People’s Choice categories.

“The results of this year’s awards demonstrate the growth over the last 12 months and show just how far we have come as an industry,” FinTech Australia CEO Rebecca Schot-Guppy said.

“We have always had a Female Fintech Leader of the year award to meaningfully highlight and celebrate women in fintech. This year, women have taken out all of the top awards including outstanding fintech leader which has never been won by a woman. While there is more work to be done, it shows just how much headway the sector has made in terms of diversity in such a short period of time.

“I want to personally congratulate Katherine, Simone, Jill and Natalie for their achievements.. Their efforts hopefully send a message to other women out there in finance and technology, that the fintech sector supports career excellence and achievement.

“It’s also worth noting the greater spread of award recipients this year. Prior years have seen some companies take home multiple awards. This year has been more competitive than ever before, reflecting again the maturity of the industry.”

“This sets the scene for the sector reaching new heights in 2022, as we find new normal in a post-COVID world.”

Media contact

Harrison Polites
0409 623 618


Fintech Australia 2021 Finnies Winners

Best Workplace Diversity — Sponsored by Tanggram

Emerging Fintech Leader of the Year — Sponsored by GoCardless
Jill Berry, Adatree

Female Fintech Leader of the Year — Sponsored by SeedSpace
Natalie Dinsdale, Athena Home Loans

Outstanding Fintech Leader of the Year — Sponsored by BDO
Katherine McConnell, Brighte and Simone Joyce, Paypa Plane

Excellence in Establishing Market Presence Global — Sponsored by Austrade

Excellence in Industry Collaboration & Partnerships — Sponsored by Xero

Excellence in Business Lending — Sponsored by Creditor Watch

Excellence in Consumer Lending — Sponsored by the Victorian Government
Athena Home Loans

Excellence in Payments (including Remittance/FX) — Sponsored by Paypa Plane

Excellence in Blockchain/Distributed Ledger — Sponsored by Swyftx

Excellence in Crypto Digital Currencies/Wallets/Exchanges — Sponsored by Stone & Chalk

Excellence in Insurtech — Sponsored by IAG Firemark Ventures
Open Insurance

Excellence in Regtech — Sponsored by OneTrust

Excellence in Wealth Management (including PFM and Robo) — Sponsored by  Ausiex

Excellence in Open Data — Sponsored by TrueLayer

Excellence in Fintech Support Services — Sponsored by Data Action
Stone & Chalk

Emerging Fintech Organisation of the Year — Sponsored by Mastercard

Fintech Organisation of the Year — Sponsored by Vocus
Athena Home Loans

Deal of the Year — Sponsored by YBF Ventures
Quadpay & Zip

Best Partnership of the Year — Sponsored by Firstmac
Valiant Finance and Australia Post

Hall of Fame
Afterpay and Airwallex

People’s Choice – Organisation of the Year — Sponsored by Tier One People

People’s Choice – Emerging Fintech — Sponsored by Tier One People

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