Commissioner for Financial Services, Financial Stability and Capital Markets Union

Mairead McGuinness is the European Commissioner for financial services, financial stability and Capital Markets Union.

The Commissioner’s vision for the portfolio is focused on ensuring the financial sector’s strength and stability, so that it can deliver for people, society and the environment.

Before joining the Commission in October 2020, Ms McGuinness was First Vice-President of the European Parliament. She served as an MEP for 16 years, and was a Vice-President of the Parliament since 2014.

As Vice-President, she oversaw relations with national Parliaments, led the Parliament’s dialogue with religious and philosophical organisations, and had responsibility for the Parliament’s communication policy.

During her time in the Parliament, Ms McGuinness sat on a range of committees, covering agriculture, environment, public health, budgets, petitions and constitutional affairs. Her legislative work included leading for the EPP Group on the European Climate Law, the revision of medical devices legislation, and CAP reform post-2013. As an Irish MEP representing the border region, she was outspoken on Brexit and the consequences for the EU and Ireland.

Prior to becoming an MEP, she was an award-winning journalist, broadcaster and commentator.


MEP, Rapporteur for the AML Regulation

Mr Eero Heinäluoma is a Member of the European Parliament and a member of the ECON and the Budget committees, as well as the tax subcommittee FISC. He is also a member of the Russia and Turkey delegations and a bureau member of the Group of Socialist and Democrats.

Mr Heinäluoma is the rapporteur for the Anti Money-Laundering/ Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CTF) Regulation, part of the AML package. He was also rapporteur for the mobilisation of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund following an application from Finland. Mr. Heinäluoma is shadow rapporteur for the Markets in Crypto-assets (MiCA) Regulation.

Mr Heinäluoma is a former party leader and secretary general of the Social Democratic Party of Finland (2002-2008). He acted as the Speaker of the Finnish Parliament 2011-2015 and Minister of Finance (2005-2007). He was the Chairman of the Audit Committee of the Finnish Parliament (2015-19).


Chair of EPIF and Vice President European Government Affairs, American Express

Elie Beyrouthy is the Chair of EPIF. He is the Vice President of European Government Affairs at American Express since June 2017, where he leads the company’s engagement with European Union Institutions and advises senior leaders on EU regulatory and public policy matters. Elie also represents American Express’ interests in several EU trade bodies and professional associations.

Prior to joining American Express, Elie was Director of International Regulatory Affairs at Western Union for 5 years. From 2007 to 2012, Elie held leadership positions at the World Savings Banks Institute and the European Banking Federation.

Elie began his career at the European Commission and the United States Federal District Court of Minnesota. He holds two Masters Degrees in Law from the University of Minnesota and from the Jean Moulin University in Lyon – France.


Global CEO for Digital Wallets, Paysafe

Chirag joined Paysafe last year and heads up the company’s newly expanded Digital Wallet’s division which focuses on delivering market-leading digital payment solutions and services to consumers.

Chirag Patel is an international payments executive with over 20 years’ experience gained in a diverse range of roles for well-known, global organizations.  During his career he has launched and grown multiple consumer-facing and B2B payments products and services around the world including alternative payment methods, prepaid, card payments, and remittance. As part of this, he has managed P&Ls up to 5 billion euros in annual revenue and focussed heavily on the customer experience, making decisions based on data and a strong strategic vision.


Director, North America and EU Payment Acceptance, Amazon

Meg Bramlette is the Director of North American & European Payment Acceptance at Amazon.

She has nearly 20 years of experience leading global teams that innovate on behalf of customers at the intersection of commerce, payments, and technology. Prior to Amazon, Meg was a management consultant with the Auriemma Group and worked at Citi.

She lives in Seattle and holds a degree in Operations Research from Columbia University.


Country Manager Spain, Head of Card Services Spain and Benelux, American Express

Current Responsibilities:

CEO-Country Manager Spain and Head of International Card business for Spain, Netherlands, Belgium and Luxemburg

Chairman of AEESA (Amex Europe-issuing) and Board member of AEEPE (Amex Europe-acquiring)

Chairman Amex AEESA Operational Risk Commitee

Chairman of the Board of several legal entities:
– American Express España
– American Express Travel
– American Express Insurance Services

Board member of the American Chamber of Commerce in Spain, American Business Council in Spain. Exceltur and IESE Junta Territorial de Madrid

Vice-Chair Diversity & Inclusion American Chamber of Commerce

Mentor for Programa Consejeros Eje&Con


Head of Unit, Retail Financial Services, DG FISMA, European Commission

Eric Ducoulombier is Head of the Retail and Payments Unit in DG FISMA since January 2019. Prior to this, he was in charge of the Unit dealing with Inter-Institutional affairs and Planning in DG FISMA.

Mr. Ducoulombier joined the European Commission in 1992.

Before joining the European Commission, he gained experience in the private sector, working as a consultant in European Affairs and as a lawyer.

Mr. Ducoulombier holds a Master’s Degree in Law.


Global Head of Regulatory Compliance, Thunes

Ignacio González-Páramo is Global Head of Regulatory Compliance at Thunes. In this role Ignacio takes care of compliance with applicable legislation and heads public affairs on behalf of Thunes, representing the company externally, before regulators, policy makers competentent authorities and trade associations, like the European Payment Institutions Federation (EPIF) where he sits on the Executive Board. 

Prior to joining Thunes he had senior regulatory compliance roles at Payvision and ServiRed, S.A. –a Spanish association of banks and major payments scheme in Spain-. Ignacio holds a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from Universidad Pontificia Comillas (ICAI-ICADE), Madrid, and a master’s degree in e-commerce and IT from Universidad Carlos III, Madrid. Ignacio is often speaker and panellist in industry events and contributes regularly on blogs and specialized publications. 


Senior Vice President, Elavon

Brian Curran is a Board member of the European Payment Institutions Federation (EPIF) and is a Senior Vice President and International Risk Leader at Elavon Financial Services DAC (EFS).

Prior to his current role, he was the Chief Compliance Officer and Head of AML in EFS from 2013 to 2018 with Compliance oversight of Elavon’s activities in Europe, Canada and South America. In his time at EFS, Mr. Curran has been responsible for overseeing the implementation of the Interchange Fee Regulation, Payment Services Directive 2 and General Data Protection Regulation.

Before joining Elavon, he was a Senior Regulator in the Enforcement Directorate of the Central Bank of Ireland and prior to that he was a Director in KPMG’s Forensic Department.


CEO, MarketPay, on behalf of Eurocommerce

After 11 years in Accenture firm, Isabelle Clairac joined the Carrefour Group in 2005 in the IT department. She was in charge of the loyalty and customer journey transformation programmes before being appointed CIO of Carrefour Bank in 2010, where she defined and managed the long-term IT strategy and its pan-European development.

Today, Isabelle Clairac is Managing Director of Market Pay, a European fintech for the retail industry, where she brings her cross-functional vision of payments within a major retailer, her 360° view of the customer and her solid experience of IT strategies.

Isabelle is chair of the Payments Systems Committee of EuroCommerce, and represents merchants in the European Cards Stakeholders Group (ECSG). She is a computer engineer, graduated from the Ecole Supérieure d’Informatique, Electronique et Automatique (ESIEA), and holds a Master of Business Consulting from ESCP.


Director General, European Payments Council

Etienne Goosse is the Director General of the European Payments Council. He has extensive professional experience across different sectors of the payments industry.

He started his career with the Belgian Central Bank. He held executive positions at eurocheque International, Europay International and MasterCard Europe.

In his previous assignments, Mr Goosse’s responsibilities included franchise management, legal and regulatory affairs, stakeholder management as well as finance and administration. He also has an extensive track record in managing governance as well as European and public affairs.


Director General, Market Infrastructure and Payments, European Central Bank

Ulrich Bindseil is Director General Market Infrastructure and Payments at the European Central Bank (ECB), a post he has held since November 2019.

Previously, he was Director General Market Operations (from May 2012 to October 2019) and head of the Risk Management Division (between 2005 and 2008).

He first entered central banking in 1994, when he joined the Economics Department of the Deutsche Bundesbank, having studied economics.

His publications include, among others, Monetary Policy Operations and the Financial System, OUP, 2014; Central Banking before 1800 – A Rehabilitation, OUP, 2019; Introduction to Central Banking (with A. Fotia, Springer, 2021).


Senior Manager, Government Relations EMEA, PayPal

Mathilde Bonneau is Senior Manager, Government Relations EMEA for PayPal since February 2016. In this role, she leads PayPal’s strategy and engagement with EU stakeholders on policy issues affecting PayPal, with a particular focus on the payments framework and the digital economy. She also advises the company’s business leaders on EU public policy matters. In 2019-2020, Mathilde spent a year based in Tokyo (Japan), working with the PayPal Japanese and wider Asia-Pacific teams on policy issues in the region and fostering greater links between the EMEA and APAC teams.

Prior to joining PayPal, Mathilde spent nearly four years based in Brussels at the consultancy Brunswick Group, where she advised technology and financial services clients on corporate communications and regulatory issues in the EU. During this time, she also worked in San Francisco with the firm’s Silicon Valley clients.

Mathilde began her career at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content & Technology (DG CNECT) where she supported the work of the privacy and security team, focusing on the ePrivacy Directive and the Data Protection Reform.

She holds an MSc in European Politics and Government from the London School of Economics (LSE) and an MA in European Affairs from Sciences Po Paris.


Manager – Payments Policy, Financial Conduct Authority

Helene is a payment, retail banking and crypto specialist. She has extensive regulatory experience in the UK and internationally.

She joined the FCA in June 2019 and manages the payments policy team. Her focuses include open banking and open finance, fraud, payments regulation and crypto / CBDC. Before joining the FCA, she worked at the European Banking Authority, where she led open banking, strong customer authentication and fraud work.

Prior to that, she worked at the FSA/FCA in a range of roles ranging from supervision to competition and in the industry in compliance roles.

She holds a PhD in law.

Marius Jurgilas

Ph.D., Professor of Practice at Vilnius University and Senior Vice President, Research and Innovations, SUPER HOW?

Mr Jurgilas is a Professor of Practice at Vilnius University and Senior Vice President for Research and Innovations at Super How? blockchain technology laboratory in Lithuania.

His research focuses on the areas of Financial infrastructure, Blockchain, Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and Web3 technological innovations.

Mr Jurgilas served until recently as a member of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania, a position he held for over 9 years. In this role, he was responsible for the field of financial assets management and market operations, payment instrument policy and payment systems, as well as research. In recent years Lithuania has emerged as a top jurisdiction for fintech companies within the EU under the leadership of the Bank of Lithuania.

Prior to joining the Bank of Lithuania, he worked as an economist at Norges Bank and the Bank of England. He has also worked in research at the European Central Bank and gained academic experience in the US.

Mr Jurgilas holds a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from Vilnius University and both a Master’s degree and Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Connecticut.

Michael Pechner

Managing Director, eBay Payments

After spending more than 20 years holding senior positions in cash management, payments and liquidity management across London, Amsterdam, Zurich, and Brussels for major banks including Citi, BNPParibas and Barclays/ Barclaycard, Michael returned to his native Luxembourg where he was CCO of the Luxembourg Stock Exchange and CEO of Digicash/ COO of Payconiq.

He has been involved in several regtech start ups with a governance focus and is now the Managing Director and General Manager, as well as member of the Board of eBay Payments Europe.

Michael holds an English and French law degree and an MBA from the University of Stratchclyde Business School.


EEA CEO & Director Paysafe

Konstantinos is a business executive with over 15 years’ experience in corporate governance and regulatory affairs based in Brussels and has specialized over the last 8 years in e-payments regulatory framework at EEA and national level.

Konstantinos has been working with Paysafe Group since 2015 on regulatory matters related to the offer of eCash in EEA markets and from 2018 Konstantinos is based in Dublin as the CEO of the eCash business entity in the EEA authorized by the Central Bank of Ireland. Since April 2022, Konstantinos has been the CEO of the Digital Wallets / Acquiring / Issuing regulated entity for the Paysafe Group in the EEA. He is also Chair of the EPIF Anti Money Laundering (AML) Task Force and represents EPIF in the European Retail Payments Board and related Working Groups of the ERPB.

Konstantinos holds an MA in Political Economy of the EU from the University of Athens, Greece, and an MBA from the Solvay Business School in Brussels.


Public Policy Europe Group Leader, Western Union

Nicolas Kügler is a Public Policy Europe Group Leader at Western Union, based in Brussels, Belgium.

He is responsible for interfacing between different lines of business and external stakeholders, policy makers and trade bodies on matters of public policy and government affairs. He particularly focuses on policy issues around payment services, anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing (AML/CFT) as well as operational resilience, crypto and environmental, social and corporate (ESG) governance.

He joined Western Union in December 2021 bringing over 10 years of financial services experience. Previously Nicolas worked at Bank of America and Intercontinental Exchange in Brussels, Belgium and London, United Kingdom.


Vice Chair of EPIF and Vice President, Head of Public Policy and Regulatory Affairs Europe, Western Union

Loreta Liutkutė is Vice President, Head of EU Public Policy and Regulatory affairs at Western Union and Vice-Chair of the European Payments Institutions Federation (EPIF). In her role at Western Union, she is responsible for government relations and strategy building, as well as engagement with European and national policy makers and other public and private financial services stakeholders. She represents EPIF on the European Payments Council’s Scheme Management Board (SMB). She is also a member of the European Commission’s Payment Systems Market Expert Group (PSMEG) and a Board member of the European Parliamentary Financial Services Forum (EPFSF).

Loreta previously worked as Regulatory Affairs Adviser for Visa where she actively engaged with European policymakers, regulators and Central Banks, notably in France as well as in Eastern European countries.

With over ten years’ experience in the payments landscape, she has established strong relationships with European policy makers and major financial institutions by providing them with regulatory advice on financial services legislation. Her work is particularly focused on payment services legislation, the Digital Single Market, Data Protection, Anti Money Laundering/Countering Terrorism Financing (AML/CTF), and Cybersecurity policies.

During her career she also gained experience working as a volunteer legal adviser in a major French NGO, providing legal assistance on matters of nationality, asylum and refugee status.

Loreta holds a Master degree in European Law from Lille II University.


Head of EPIF Secretariat and Director, Afore Consulting

Nickolas Reinhardt is Co-Founder and Director of Afore Consulting, a premier European public affairs consultancy in Brussels specialized in financial services.

Having worked in Brussels for more than 25 years, he has built up an extensive network in Brussels and the key member states. Nickolas is a vastly experienced, highly capable and a leading authority on financial services regulation.

He is particularly knowledgeable on payments and has been active with EPIF since it was formed in 2011.

His ability to be a strong advocate with commercially astute and user friendly advice is based on his knowledge of the industry having trained and worked as a merchant banker and securities trader.

He has an MA in Political Science, Economics and History from the Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel, Germany. He lectured on EU affairs at the University of Limerick and Queen’s University, Belfast. Nick grew up in a bilingual home in Kiel, Germany with a German father and British mother.