Wise CFO, Matt Briers, announces his retirement

The wise move: the fintech firm's CFO is stepping down to concentrate on his health after a bike accident.

May 26, 2023
Wise CFO, Matt Briers, announces his retirement
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Matt Crabtree

Written By

Matt Crabtree


Wise's CFO, Matt Briers, this week announced his intention to retire from his position.

Wise (review), a financial technology company, has announced that its finance head would be leaving his position to concentrate on his rehabilitation following a bicycle accident he had last year.

The decision was made just two weeks after CEO Kristo Kaarman said he would be taking a lengthy sabbatical in the autumn.

Official intention to resign

On Monday morning, the London-listed money transfer company announced that its finance head of eight years, Matt Briers, notified the board of his intention to resign.

Due to the bike accident, Briers had to resign from his position last year, and in his stead, finance director Kingsley Kemish ran the show.

There will be many chief financial officers at Wise in its first century, and he is only beginning the transition to the next one. Briers has made this claim in a public statement.

He said that a year ago he returned to work at Wise after a rather awful accident in which he slid beneath the wheels of a bus, and now that he has decided to concentrate on making a complete recovery, some of us may remember that he stated this.

Remaining for orderly transition

He also said he would be staying on until the new year to “support an orderly transition”, and that the company would keep everyone informed as more information became available.

Despite an ongoing regulatory investigation into his tax issues, this announcement comes only two weeks after boss Kristo Kaarmann said he will take a three-month vacation to spend time with his family at the end of this year.

Shares dropped about 4.5 per cent at 8:10 a.m. ET, when investors heard the news of Briers' departure, but have since recovered to trade down around 3.7 per cent. 

Briers leadership record

Briers has guided Wise through a time of expansion and the company's $11 billion London initial public offering.

Wise, in contrast to many of its fintech competitors, became profitable under Briers' leadership rather quickly, in 2017.

Finance and technology The cost of living pressure and currency volatility have unnerved clients, and as a result, Wise recently reported a decline in the amount of cash transmitted on its platform for the second consecutive quarter. 

London-listed fintech fell short of expectations due to lower money moved per client, down 4% year-over-year and 8% sequentially among personal customers. 

They think that spending among these groups, such as on real estate and investments, is more nebulous and subject to macroeconomic factors.


Revenues dropped by 1% to £223.5m due to the downturn in the fourth quarter. After hearing the news, investors dumped shares by more than 10%.

However, Wise has been able to profit handsomely from the increase in interest rates over the last year thanks to its account offering. 

But as the company takes advantage of higher loan rates, annual revenues soared 73% to £964.3m, above the company's prior projection of 68-72%.

The company's net interest revenue from client deposits increased by 29 percent year over year, reaching £56 million in the fiscal year's fourth quarter. Its cash reserves have grown dramatically to £10.7 billion, a 57% year-over-year increase.

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