Folsom, California-based One Inc, a digital insurance payments platform, named Microsoft veteran Paul Schmidt its CFO Tuesday. As CFO, Schmidt will oversee all financial, accounting and legal functions.
Alongside Schmidt, the vendor hired Jig Patel as COO, Kathy Tuite as chief marketing officer, and Kevin Ostrander as chief sales officer. The hires follow One Inc's August acquisition of Invenger Technologies, another insurance payments platform, and its February recapitalization by Great Hill Partners.
"At this stage of my career, I've got a pretty full toolbox that can help One Inc. really grow to the next stage," Schmidt said. "A CFO's key questions are always how do we make money, and how do we grow?"
Schmidt spent 18 years at Microsoft, serving in a variety of finance leadership roles, including five years as CFO of the company's Strategic Alliances, Applications and Services Group.
Schmidt's years at Microsoft were equal parts broad and untraditional, he said.
"I started with Microsoft Latin America as controller, in a 35-person subsidiary," he said. "It was a great introduction to the company and a way of learning the business, understanding the relationship with customers and how we sold to and supported them."
Just prior to his move to One Inc., Schmidt led finance for fintech startup Motif Investments for three years, and offered consulting and advisory services for other CFOs on a freelance basis to private equity and venture capital firms.
"I was really fascinated by tech, and [moved] to a smaller company where I'd have a chance to influence the growth and scale," he said.
Working as a consultant for other CFOs "gave me a chance to try to pitch in and help them with whatever challenges they were facing," he said. "Whether that was building out their team, evaluating their tools, considering what other companies are doing at these stages or thinking through their business model of what's next for them."
Many companies are looking to transition to digital payments, One Inc.'s primary offering, which is keeping Schmidt and his team busy.
"We're quite fortunate, as an enterprise, to be in a sector in which the core business isn't overly impacted by COVID, in that customers still are making payments and incurring claims," he said. "Pre-COVID, most companies in our sector were transitioning to digital, or evaluating it, but COVID has accelerated that."
"The role of finance is so fundamental to every business, and at One Inc., I'm working towards building on the strong team we have," he said. "I'm all about expanding the role of finance, where appropriate, in an organization. The finance function should be the most knowledgeable from a data perspective and that should permeate the organization; not to run it, but to make every decision smarter."