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40-year-old ex-UBS son of billionaire enriched from fintech IPO

It's been a torrid time for the Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) industry in 2023. Inbound regulations have cast a lot of doubt about its many fintech unicorns, but Zilch may be getting out in front of the rest. The London based fintech firm recently revealed it was having conversations regarding an IPO with the LSE, NYSE and NASDAQ.

But who stands to benefit most from the IPO? Zilch is nearly a month late on its annual confirmation statement to companies house, though we can make some interesting observations from last year's filing.

One of the larger individual shareholders at Zilch is Ross Patrick Desmond, son of Irish multibillionaire and ex-Citi banker Dermot Desmond, owning 8,376 shares at the time the statement was released. Ross started his career in investment banking as an equities trader across UBS, Barclays and Citi, but more recently has been known for running Scottish football club Celtic alongside his father.

Another investor set to earn a lot from Zilch's IPO is Paul Walsh, CEO of call intelligence firm Infinity and advertising platform Jellyfish. As of the 2022 statement, Walsh owned a massive 53,295 shares. 

As for the average employee, figures are far less impressive. Company accounts up to March 2021 revealed an average of just £11.9k per head spent on stock payments, including the multiple directors. 

Eyes will be peeled on Zilch's accounts until its overdue reports are released. Since the last release, Zilch hit a $2bn valuation and lauded itself as the fastest growing fintech, reaching around 300 employees before cutting 10% of its workforce alongside much of the fintech industry. It will be interesting to see if the aforementioned shareholders doubled down, or if employees earned more shares on average as the company grew. 

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AUTHORAlex McMurray Editor

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