Hrefna Ösp appointed new CEO of Creditinfo Iceland
LONDON, UK, 23rd September, 2021
Hrefna Ösp Sigfinnsdóttir has been appointed as the new CEO of Creditinfo Iceland. She previously held the position of Managing Director of Asset Management and Brokerage at Landsbankinn. She has over 27 years of experience in the finance industry and will bring her wealth of knowledge and expertise to Creditinfo Iceland and the company at large.
‘We warmly welcome Hrefna Ösp to work and we are very happy to have her join us. Hrefna has extensive experience and a clear vision of the functioning of financial markets, which will be a major driver in moving Creditinfo’s journey forward. Hrefna joins a team of highly motivated staff who are also excited to have her on board’ says Paul Randall, CEO of Creditinfo Group.
“I am especially excited to join Creditinfo. I have followed the company since its establishment and have been a loyal customer. I know that Creditinfo has a very strong team that provides excellent service with powerful solutions. It is exciting to become part of an international ecosystem such as Creditinfo Group which is widespread throughout four continents, I foresee many growth opportunities for me as a professional and Creditinfo Iceland as a team. I am especially keen to further develop and provide solutions the market needs, such as open banking and increased demand for knowledge of customers and the origin of capital” says Hrefna Ösp.
Hrefna holds a Degree in Business Administration from the University of Iceland and a certification exam in securities trading.
She resigned from Landsbankinn this autumn after having been there since 2010. Before that, she worked as a fund manager at Arev Securities Company from 2007. She also worked as the Director of the Listing Division and as an expert on the same at the Iceland Stock Exchange from 1998-2006. Hrefna previously worked as the Director of Personal Services at Fjárvangur and was also an employee of the Central Bank of Iceland’s Monetary Policy Department.
Hrefna has also served on the boards of several companies both in Iceland and abroad and is also one of the founding members of IcelandSIF, an independent forum for discussion and education on responsible and sustainable investments.
The Creditinfo Team welcomes Hrefna and is looking forward to start collaborating with her.
The key to success (my humble opinion): Any lessons from credit-vibrant Iceland to small population countries?
By Reynir Finndal Grétarsson – Founder, Creditinfo Group
In 2010 I decided to go back to University and learn Anthropology. This is the discipline that deals with human behavior in wide and holistic manner. Why do humans behave as they do? After graduating in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree, my understanding of the complex organism that is the modern human being increased just a little bit. The most important thing I learnt was that different behavior of different groups of people could be explained by what we call culture.
Creditinfo Group awarded the Knowledge Prize 2019
The Association of Business and Economics has chosen Creditinfo as the Knowledge company of the year 2019. Creditinfo Group was chosen as the Knowledge Company of the Year by the Association of Business and Economics. During the selection process, companies that have excelled in their international markets in the recent years were considered. Other companies that also came at the top include CCP, Marel and Nox Medical.
Invited to join IFC in Morocco
We were invited to join IFC in Morocco last week at the 5th Financial Infrastructure and Risk Management Training for MENA and African Regions. Reynir Grétarsson (CEO Creditingo group Hf) – pictured, Paul Randall (Director of Business Development Creditinfo International GmbH), Dirce Varela (CEO, Creditinfo Cape Verde) and Edwin Urasa (Business Development Manager, Creditinfo Tanzania) attended the training.
IFC advised the training was very successful; from a course review of the feedback forms received it looks that on a scale 0-5 over 90% of participants rated the training 4 or 5 (with 5 being the highest).
People have predefined ideas about what it is that I do. I have found that such ideas vary from me being in charge of everything that happens in our company to being in a ceremonial role. People outside the company typically believe I am involved in much more than I am. As an example someone I know might contact me and ask for a job. I would answer that I have only three employees myself and have not hired for 3 years, nor plan to. A lot of people are being hired by our Group, perhaps close to 1 per week now, but this is not something that is on my table. And that is not because I am too good for this, but precisely because I believe I am not very good at hiring and supporting people reporting directly to me. I typically give them tasks and leave it to them. The “outsiders” also find it strange that I have not been involved in the Icelandic operation at all for many years, even if I am working from the same office.
We are not only international, we are equal opportunity
Being from a small village on the north coast of Iceland and without any contacts whatsoever in the beginning, I did come across barriers related to who I was, as opposed to what I did or could do.
I like to have people with different backgrounds and dispositions in our company. Not all of are the usual run-of-the-mill international experts. But this only gives broader perspective to the company and makes it stronger.
I am not sure that what I am saying makes sense to you (all), but I wanted to say it anyway.
More about Azerbaijan
As you may remember, in November, we told you that we were the finalists, along with CRIF, for a tender to become the operator of the First Credit Bureau in Azerbaijan.
Before selecting the winner, the Executive Committee wanted to clarify a few issues relating to the hardware of each organisation. In December, Tomáš Tichý,Radek Bittner, Paul Randall and Reynir gave a presentation in Baku. According to Paul his presentation was fantastic and Reynir’s was OK! (how cheeky!).
Anyway, the Committee now want to visit both organisations, so at the end of January they will be going to IBCH in Kiev and to CRIF HQ in Bologna. Afterwhich they will advise who will receive the tender. Watch this space….
On a side note, we bumped into William Haigh as we were leaving the IFC office.
We won the tender in Afghanistan
As you may already know, we won the tender for developing the Public Credit Registry (PCR) system for Da Afghanistan Bank (DAB) to enhance access to financial resources and loan facilities in the country. Reynir signed the contract for the project in Kabul in February 2013.
Reynir has a new Christmas jumper
“Best wishes and seasons greetings to you and your families!“
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 »