Sandra Blair | Executive Profile | ATLANTA TREND

Merchant eSolutions has New Executive Leadership Team and Great News

By Robert Green


With a new executive team, end-to-end Payment processor Merchant e-Solutions has some exciting news about the current and future direction of the company.

In last 12 months MeS has focused on streamlining operations to deliver steady operating cash flow while developing a differentiated product portfolio that when combined will return the company to rapid growth in 2021,” says Sandra Blair, EVP of Product, Marketing and Enterprise Services at Merchant e-Solutions. While a great new team was definitely part of the change, Blair also believes that the value of the company as an asset was misunderstood in the past. “We are a full-service payment processor and there aren’t many of those,” she says. “There are many things that we can do, but in the future we will be focusing on the B to B and card not present space.”

Merchant e-Solutions will be focusing on three main areas in the B to B space. First, since 70 to 80% of B to B companies still rely heavily on check, they will remove the friction and expense of checks and also offer alternative forms of payment. Second, they will help B to B businesses that haven’t typically been online to go online. “There are a lot of holdouts who now know, because of the social distancing environment, that they have no choice but to upgrade,” she says. Finally, they will be changing Merchant e-Solutions from a merchant services provider to a financial services provider, including providing data analytics for customers.

“Our goal is to give the SMB owner more of a life,” says Blair. “No one starts a business so that they can sit in the back office doing paperwork.” Owners will be able to focus on making their business stronger.

Their products are not just for SMBs, however. “Our new products and services are enterprise grade and can be used no matter how large the business becomes,” she says, also pointing out that they are fully integrated with NetSuite.

“We’ll also provide data so that business owners can decide how best to accept payment,” she says. “In expanding beyond credit card processing, we will be the one stop shop for which channel to use – ACH, wire, check or credit card processing.”

“As our CEO, Mike Rouse says, with more than 30 million SMBs operating in the U.S., generating 44% of U.S. economic activity, it’s more important than ever that they have control of their funds to run their businesses successfully. Managing money, cash flow and getting funds faster are as important as processing, especially in the current environment.”

The company has been “growing like crazy,” according to Blair and has just doubled its office space to 60,000 square feet with a move to Alpharetta. “Stay tuned for more exciting announcements coming up in the first part of June,” she says.

Below are brief bios of the new executive team:

Sandra Blair, EVP Product, Marketing and Enterprise Services – Blair leads and maintains an in-depth focus on Merchant e-Solutions’ product vision, operations and management, as well as marketing and business enterprise services. She has more than 25 years of operational and consulting experience in the financial technology industry — primarily electronic payment processing and banking. Blair has extensive experience in developing products, remediating systems, and streamlining back-office operations and has held several senior executive roles such as CIO, COO, EVP and SVP.

Shimon Steinmetz, Chief Financial Officer – Steinmetz has more than 18 years of experience partnering with senior executives and private equity investors to tackle complex business issues and boost operating performance. Steinmetz uses his expertise to execute strategic financial and operational initiatives for Merchant e-Solutions. He has experience as a technology investment banker that has covered the Enterprise Storage, FinTech and Software Service sectors.

Joe DeTullio, Chief Information Officer – As CIO, DeTullio leverages his 25-plus years of industry experience to lead Merchant e-Solutions in the implementation of its 2020 vison. His primary areas of concentration are IT life cycle management, post-merger integration and IT effectiveness. He has worked with companies in a broad range of industries, including media and entertainment, consumer goods, financial services and private equity.

Naveed Ashraf, Chief Technology Officer – With more than 20 years’ experience, Ashraf focuses on technological opportunities within Merchant e-Solutions that will better serve client needs. He has worked in many leadership roles throughout his career as a technologist, software developer, system architect & designer, CTO and CIO. He specializes in software development processes & management, web technologies, Agile Methodologies, JAVA technologies and product development.

Mike Frank, EVP/Head of Sales – As Head of Sales, Frank oversees sales strategy and execution.  He brings more than 25 years of sales and business development experience with deep knowledge of the financial services industry. Frank has a proven and reliable record of building long term business relationships across the industry and a track record of building high-performing teams and driving sustainable growth in both revenue and profitability.

Mayrov Baru, Chief Human Resources Officer – Baru is an accomplished and results-driven Human Resources Executive with more than 25 years of comprehensive human resources experience. Her skills encompass a strong emphasis on strategic planning, leadership development, culture enrichment and business transformation. As Chief Human Resources Officer, Baru ensures the right talent, resources and culture are in place to achieve Merchant e-Solutions’ goals.

Eric Haru, Chief Risk Officer – With nearly 15 years in the payments industry, Haru brings proven experience leading teams focused on credit underwriting, regulatory oversight and assurance, fraud and loss management, payment network compliance and exam management.  Haru leads with an emphasis on risk culture, and he has a successful track record of developing risk and control functions to effectively manage enterprise risk while supporting scalability and long-term growth by the business. 

Jeff Simko, Chief Information Security and Privacy Officer – With over 10 years of experience in the Financial Technology ecosystem, Simko leads a team dedicated to supporting growth, safeguarding customer data, and instilling a strong security and privacy-focused culture throughout Merchant e-Solutions. He spent 10 years helping large merchants and technology providers to strengthen their security posture while serving in a variety of risk management, product management and compliance roles. 

“We’re excited about the team we have put together to execute a new direction at Merchant e-Solutions,” says CEO Mike Rouse. “Their combined experience and expertise will guide us to eliminate the frustrations of financial transactions and put more control in the hands of our customers.”

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