Anish Srivastava
Founder & CEO Vinaj

Anish is an entrepreneurial executive with 20+ years of experience. His diverse background includes managing commercially viable innovation in technology, product strategy, product management, operational planning and strategic partnerships. He is a well-respected speaker, consultant and advisor to startups with a passion for what’s next in the exciting digital world across industries. He also serves as a board member and in advisory roles to a number of organizations.

Most recently he was leading Citi Ventures’ Global Lab Network & Accelerators. Previous to that he was a leader in JP Morgan Chase’s Digital Customer Experience & Innovation organization. Anish held various senior & executive positions at startups such as Egreetings, Geodesic, and Lexy, pioneering new consumer facing mobile services. He also spent 6 years at Orange, building the mobile innovation practice in Silicon Valley and driving strategic partnerships in London as Director of Business Development. Early in his career he was part of the development team that built BofA’s first online banking website and first credit card website.

Anish graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a BS in Computer Science and French. His interests include soccer, running, movies and travel with his family.

Laynie Thomas
Operations Support

Laynie is a multi-role business professional. Laynie has a broad administrative background including experience with executives, professional musicians and biotech experts from around the world. At Vinaj, Laynie specializes in performing a wide variety of invaluable administrative and program support functions.

When Laynie is not organizing global communications or events, she spends time reading, traveling to new places in South America with her fiancé, and enjoying hikes through Red Rock Canyon with her two dogs, Bruce and Jewel.


Ian Myles
Co-founder & CEO area 51

Before founding Area 51, Ian was the Head of Payments at SingTel, Group Digital Life. Prior to that, Ian ran Frog Design’s office in Singapore and later he worked at their HQ in Silicon Valley. He also ran a facility for Motorola – building solutions in San Francisco.

Ian was funded by Citibank Ventures Palo Alto to build a mobile wallet & NFC solution for iPhones – and created a company from scratch. He most recently was associated with CHASE in California – running their Usability team for a year, bringing biometrics into the bank and developing credit card solutions for the Isis (Softcard) wallet.

In October 2014 he established Area51 and is currently an advisor to He is currently helping clients in Payments, Wearables, Biometrics, educational technology and the spaces in between.

Philip Farah
CEO, Managing Director, Blue Orange Innovation

Philip Farah is a digital innovation leader, Fintech evangelist and change agent trusted by senior executives of companies around the globe to translate technology disruptions into growth strategies and transformation programs.

From a functional perspective Philip has held a wide range of leadership roles including: Professional Services, Analytics Management and Business Development.

In his current role, as founder and Managing Director of Blue Orange Innovations, Philip advises Financial Services Institutions on Digital Transformation Strategies, Market validation pilots and Innovation Programs/Org Structures to ensure growth and ongoing competitive strength in a connected world. He also advises Technology companies catering to the FS sector on ways to design, market and sell Product and Services to ensure best alignment with key Business Outcomes of their target clients.

Pankaj Mody
Principal Seraria Consulting

Pankaj Mody is the Principal of Seraria Consulting, a firm that as delivers leading-edge derivatives technology solutions for its clients. He is presently providing strategic direction on a fixed-income derivatives system deployment for a Boston-based investment manager. In his most recent role, Pankaj oversaw the technology program for HSBCs Emerging Markets trading desk where he had a 10-year tenure. He has significant experience with product development, relationship management, project management and business analysis.

His other accomplishments include acting as regional head of the Derivatives Product Control IT group at HSBC, leading the development of a market-data streaming service for, a cloud-based data provider to buy-side firms, pioneering the field of object-oriented solutions at Accenture and co-lecturing a graduate-level course in Experimental Finance at Columbia University.

Pankaj holds an MS in Financial Engineering and BS in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University. When he’s not spending time with his family, his hobbies include real-estate development and carpentry.