- Citigroup has poached a former JPMorgan Chase exec to run the consumer arm of its internal startup incubator.
- Alex Sion, formerly the general manager of JPMorgan Chase’s mobile channel, is joining the bank as head of D10X for Citi’s global consumer bank, according to a memo seen by Business Insider.
- D10X, which stands for “discover 10 times,” lets employees build startup ideas within the company, and its vetting process has been compared to the TV show “Shark Tank.”
- Over 300 Citi employees are working on 85 startup ideas within the program.
Citigroup has poached a senior leader from JPMorgan Chase to run an internal startup incubator within its consumer-banking division whose vetting process has been compared to the TV show “Shark Tank.”
Alex Sion, formerly the general manager of JPMorgan Chase’s mobile channel, is joining the bank as head of D10X for Citi’s global consumer bank, according to a memo seen by Business Insider.
D10X, which stands for “discover 10 times,” is a unit within the bank dedicated to taking startup ideas from employees and building innovative products and services out of them.
“I am very pleased to announce that Alex Sion will be joining us in September as the GCB Head of D10X,” Vanessa Colella, Citi’s chief innovation officer and the head of Citi Ventures, wrote in the memo. “This is a critical position for us and one which we took time to find someone with innovations/start-up experience as well as a background in consumer financial services. He will help us to build on the momentum you have already generated in Consumer D10X.”
Colella, who has likened D10X to a venture-capital firm, told American Banker last year that Citi vetted startup ideas for the program with “deal days,” which are similar to episodes of “Shark Tank” in that employees have an opportunity to pitch their concepts to senior management and the most promising ideas move on.
Citi has over 300 employees working on 85 startup ideas within the program, though the number of employees who have contributed to or worked within D10X is over 1,500.
Notable products that have come out of D10X include Citi Connect, a blockchain platform launched in collaboration with Nasdaq in May 2017, and Proxymity, a digital proxy-voting service for shareholders that launched in November.
Whereas both of those startup ideas primarily serve Citi’s corporate customers within the Institutional Clients Group, Sion will focus on fostering products for customers of its retail bank — people with bank accounts, credit cards, and investments held at Citi.
Sion is a fintech-startup founder himself. In 2012, he founded Moven, a mobile banking platform that raised $22 million in VC funding and licensed software to TD Bank and Westpac under his leadership. He left to join JPMorgan Chase in 2016.
At JPMorgan Chase, Sion was responsible for managing a mobile banking product with more than 30 million users.
This is Sion’s second stint at Citi. He worked at the bank from 2006 to 2009, developing an early roboadviser concept that’s now called Citi Personal Wealth Management, according to his LinkedIn profile.