CEO Tales: SaaS in the City

How SaaS and the cloud is transforming technology in Financial Services.  Discussion and networking drinks.

Join some of the people who are changing the way we think about technology in Financial Services. Meet senior people from banks including HSBC, UBS, Lloyds TSB, Bank of America, M&G, The Currency Cloud and Credit Suisse, emerging technology providers including Rackspace, Salesforce, Huddle, Mimecast and Symantec , and venture and private equity investors including Highland Capital, Eden Ventures, GE Capital for an evening of discussion, debate and drinks networking.

Thanks to generous support from Erevena Executive Search and Rackspace, there is no charge to attend this event.

Eventbrite - CEO Tales - SaaS in the City

Format: 6-9pm. Drinks networking, panel discussion and audience Q&A, drinks networking.


  • Chris Swan, CTO, Client Experience, UBS.
  • Ali Mitchell, CEO, Huddle.
  • Darshan Chandarana, Global Lead, Financial services Strategy, Salesforce.

Our panel will offer their views on why the City has embraced SaaS businesses in such a short space of time, key industry trends, successful sales strategies for SaaS businesses and how to overcome the blocks to adoption in larger enterprises. SaaS and the City is an event for the people that are driving change in the financial services industry – buyers, vendors and thought leaders – to discuss the challenges they face in a fast moving industry.

Even two years ago, there was a high degree of skepticism in the financial services industry and banking sector in particular that SaaS based solutions were ‘right’ for such complex, regulated and security conscious environments. “I’m fine with our sales teams having SalesForce but it’s hard to see how it is going to get much further into the organisation than that without addressing some serious issues for us”, said one global banking CIO. How the world changed.

This CEO Tales will consider how much progress SaaS solutions have made in the financial services sector, where they are being adopted most rapidly, the major blocks to SaaS adoption and cloud computing more widely.

About the speakers:

Chris Swan, CTO Client Experience, UBS. SaaS in the CityChris Swan, CTO Client Experience UBS: Chris concentrates on strategy and architecture for web and mobile offerings across all regions and business divisions. He was previously co-head of Security CTO focussing on identity management, access control and data security. Chris represents UBS as a Director on the Steering Committee of the Open Data Center Alliance (ODCA), an industry association focussed on enterprise adoption of cloud computing. Before joining UBS he was CTO at a London based technology investment banking boutique, which operated a cloud only IT platform. Chris previously held various senior R&D, architecture and engineering positions at Credit Suisse, which included networks, security, data centre automation and introduction of new application platforms.

Alastair Mitchell HuddleAlastair Mitchell, CEO Founder, Huddle: Alastair founded Huddle in 2006 after being frustrated by the inability of existing enterprise technology to help people collaborate. Spending millions on a SharePoint implementation, to watch it fail dismally, was the final straw. Since 2006, Alastair has grown Huddle to more than 200 people in London, San Francisco, New York and Washington DC. Sales have tripled year on year and Huddle has raised $40M in funding.  Alastair’s career has followed the trajectory of the internet. He built the first global soft commodities marketplace. When the business was bought, Alastair moved to Dunnhumby and led its marketing intelligence product from $0-$60 million sales in 4 years. He joined the board in 2005 to run a 300 person global team. When Dunhumby was purchased by Tesco, Alastair started Huddle. Alastair has an MEng in Naval Architecture.

Darshan Chandarana salesforceDarshan Chandarana, Global Lead, Financial services Strategy, Salesforce: Darshan has worked on both sides of the table – as buyer and seller of technology and solutions in the Financial services industry and is well placed to comment on the significant changes in approach to technology that have taken place in the industry over the past decade. He currently leads the Global Financial Services Solutions team at Salesforce, where he is focused on transformational projects in Banking, Insurance & Capital Markets. Previously, he was a director in Oracle’s Cloud Computing Group, working on product strategy, development & solutions specifically for the Platform as a Service initiatives within Financial Services. Until 2008 he headed up the financial services product strategy team in London for BEA. Prior to this he worked for Bank of America, where he was responsible for various cash and treasury management products & technologies in Capital Markets.

Our supporters for this CEO Tales: SaaS in the City are Erevena and Rackspace.