November 2013

Growing a mo!

movember_fotoDuring November each year, Movember is responsible for the sprouting of millions of moustaches around the world.   With their “Mo’s” men raise vital funds and awareness for prostate and testicular cancer and mental health.

A team of the guys at SOLUTIONS CZ got into the spirit of Movember by growing a range of impressive moustaches. 
At the end of the month, the ladies of the Czech office voted and David Urban became the resolute winner. For his great efforts, David won a session at the local Barber Shop. 

However, second place was undecided, as Milan Krupicka and Radek Bittner drew in the number of votes, but in the deciding round, Radek won over Milan 3:2.  Jitka Burkoňová lead the way in helping the guys raise money for the charity and LindaTomanová assisted in arranging the vote. 

“There are a few of these that have definite porn star look-a-like potential, maybe I should lend them my leather pants to complete the look!”  A.H.

Conference in Tanzania

Reynir Grétarsson and Dave Kahwa (Creditinfo Tanzania) participated in a conference in Maputo, Mozambique, at the end of October.  The conference was organized by the German Development-cooperation Agency (GIZ) and participants were, in addition to locals, from various African countries such as Uganda, Namibia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Tunisia, and Ghana.  Two other credit bureaus were offered to participate. Continue reading »

Players of the month: Hákon Stefánsson and IBCH Ukraine

hakon - old picIndividual Player –  Hákon Stefánsson 

Since the new laws on consumer credit were introduced in Iceland in October 2013, the  number of downloads of the Creditinfo Iceland Credit Report for Individuals have increased enormously.  It is now much harder for people in Iceland to get overdrafts, car loans and any kind  of consumer debt.  The positive aspects of the new law, is that those people with good credit scores will benefit from better interest rates on their loans.
This is excellent news for us too, as our products fit really well with the requirements of the new legislation. However, we are also developing new products specifically in accordance with those requirements. These products are designed to accelerate and simplify lending to individuals under the stringent conditions of the new legislation and to ensure security of transactions.

As such, our very own Beckham look alike, Hákon Stefánsson was on prime time TV in Iceland – you can watch the clip at at 14:48mins to 21mins).  You’ll see he looks particular relaxed in front of the camera, so we expect the call from SKY SPORTS to do a stand in for David will come soon.

Team Players – IBCH Ukrainejongauti-2

Jón Jóhannesson and the team in Ukraine have had an excellent month with more than an 80% increase in Sales and a massive 247% increase in EBITDA. If you still don’t know what EBITDA is, it’s how much profit a company makes with its present assets and its operations on the products it produces and sells.



Creditinfo Lithuania celebrated 3Q results at sport courts

Creditinfo Lithuania continued tradition to grow it‘s muscles on the sport courts as third quarter revenues achieved goals.

This time employees were able choose from basketball, dodgeball and badminton sports.

Most valuable player (MVP) award in basketball went to IT administrator Tomas Mičiulis‘ hands. Sales manager Vytautas Pociūnas appeared the best in dodgeball. While his coleague Andrius Vitkauskas showed his strenght at badminton. Congratulations to them and all other participants!

Badmintonas Krepsinis Kvadratas

Credit as a profit centre

mark hMark Harrison, CEO of Association of Credit Central & Eastern Europe today delivered a presentation to the Creditinfo Academy on “credit as a profit centre”.  


Mark discussed the credit process from the order, invoice, through to collection and cash matching.

View Mark’s presentation here: Mark ACCEE

View Mark’s presentation video here: Vimeo

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Azerbaijan update and more in the pipeline

The Executive Committee for the First Credit Bureau in Azerbaijan has finished summing up the results of the tender on selection of the operator for this new institution.  Creditinfo  are through to the final round of the tender along with CRIF (Italy).

The final selection of the winner has not been made yet as the Executive Committee would like to clarify a few issues relating to the hardware of each organisation. As such, we’ve been invited to Baku to deliver a special presentation of the proposed hardware. We’ll let you know how we get on!

In the Pipeline

The pipeline for Credit Bureau projects for next year is really building up and to name just a few countries where we are involved in a bid pending decision:  Iraq, Algeria, Comoros Island and Jordan.  CIS will have their hands more than full if all these deals go through!

Complementing Traditional Sources with Alternative Data

sean albert

Joining the Creditinfo Academy was Mr. Sean Albert, Senior Vice President at Microbilt Corporation.  Today, Sean gave a presentation on “complementing traditional sources with alternative data.”  He also gave a demonstration of the Microbilt systems.

Sean has over 20 years of experience in executive management, including product design, business development and marketing. Sean’s current global directions include PRBC (Payment Reporting Builds Credit), an alternative credit bureau that services credit worthy consumers who have limited or no traditional scores and the business that want to access them. He also manages IBV (Instant Bank Verification) a real -time financial verification tool and is a member of MicroBilt’s Executive Management Team, which guides the company’s vision, employee objectives, and progress.

He is often a guest speaker at conferences and workshops having delivered a similar presentation at the Creditinfo Global Forum – Sept. 2013, Prague. He formerly served as Chief Business Development Officer for Battalion Capital, a private energy fund and the brokerage firm, Liquidity Energy. Prior to these companies, he managed the venture capital and private equity firm of WH Holdings as Vice President, where he oversaw multiple acquisitions and financing transactions. Mr. Albert was also the CEO of Icon Design Group, an award winning marketing firm, CFO & President for G&G Properties and worked in advertising for NBC Universal. Sean graduated from Colorado State University. He is involved with multiple local and national charities and is the President of the HLA Foundation. He resides in Princeton, New Jersey with his family.

microbilt logoAbout MicroBilt Corporation
MicroBilt Corporation, is the single source and preferred provider of decision critical information that responsibly assists businesses in reducing risk and managing their business. MicroBilt provides online access to consumer and commercial credit bureau data with automated decisioning and collection services. With its PRBC® Consumer Report with the FICO® Expansion Score, MicroBilt is the leading provider of alternative credit data to businesses that want to offer credit and other financial services to the approximately 110 million underserved and underbanked consumers in the United States. MicroBilt offers the small business owner simple, cost-effective solutions and a wide selection of data products for fraud prevention, consumer financing, debt collection, and background screening at or through web services integration.

MicroBilt is also the leader in proprietary financial data with its Integra Data which offers industry benchmarks, norms, valuation data, risk management tools, and other private company financial data that help companies get the answers they need when they need them. The company enables businesses to enhance their content offerings by delivering private labeled content or web sites to their established online communities. MicroBilt Corporation maintains offices in Georgia and New Jersey. Please read more at

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One of the reasons we're in business!

A bit of bed time reading……although it’s over 300 pages long, we recommend you take a look at the report published by the World Bank, Doing Business.  

Check out the Getting Credit category – it supports the reason we’re in business!

Go to: 

Let's have fun at work!

Work has an insanely important impact on our lives, so why make it harder than it has to be?  You probably see more of the guys you work with than you do your own family and friends. So, it is important that we all get along and enjoy coming to work.

We’re all professionals but it is important to have a good sense of humour (GSOH) too.  Humour is a great skill to have because if you can get people laughing, you can get people listening. They start to feel more relaxed and comfortable with you. Humour can also disarm uncomfortable situations.

Studies show that humour  …..

  • is a natural stress buster
  • boosts morale
  • puts others at their ease and makes you more approachable
  • can build trust
  • promotes creativity and productivity

Marius is our man in Romania!  

mariusMarius Harjoi, CEO, Creditinfo Romania 
He’s not shy when it comes to learning, having 2 degrees qualifying him in Banking & Finance and as an Economist and he even has Masters degree in Management of SMEs.
His professional career began with the EM&EF Group, an Italian producer of ice-cream Momenti Magici, as an accountant.  Also, working at Aston Com SA, a direct importer for Fujitsu air conditioners. After the first year at Aston in his role as an accountant, Marius commenced a career in sales rapidly progressing in his responsibilities which resulted in him joining Creditexpress Financial Services as Sales Director in 2007.  Creditexpress are a key player in the debt collection market in not only Romania but also throughout Central Eastern Europe. Marius brings a wealth of direct sales and financial experience to the Group.
We hired him not only for his credit industry experience but he also has excellent taste in music! From old or new, rock to alternative and even further to rap. His favourite bands are U2 (although he recommends not to try karaoke with their songs, as it’s very difficult – one to try at the next Management Meeting!), Red Hot Chili Peppers and Depeche Mode.
His hobbies include hiking, cycling for fun, most sports, especially water sports – possibly because his father was a mariner in the navy in his youth.
He’s been married for 6 years now and however they’ve been together for more than 13 years now.