Chairman & CEO | Co-Founder
In 1999, Tom Villante founded YapStone with the simple goal of converting bills commonly paid by paper check into online electronic payments. Today, YapStone processes over $18 billion in online and mobile payments and has raised over $110 million in capital. As Chairman and CEO, Tom leads the strategic vision, operational execution and global expansion of the company. With his experience and expertise in the FinTech industry, Tom is focused on positioning YapStone’s innovative and proprietary payments platform to meet the needs of global marketplaces and large vertical markets.
Prior to YapStone, Tom was a Partner at The Seidler Company, a private equity firm, and an investment banker with S.G. Warburg (now UBS) and William E. Simon & Sons. In addition to his role at YapStone, Tom is a member of Young Presidents’ Organization (Santa Monica Bay) and has served on the Boards of local schools and charitable organizations. With 20 years of entrepreneurial experience, he is an active angel and real estate investor, frequent speaker at FinTech and Leadership conferences as well as a contributing writer to notable business publications. Tom earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Princeton University.
David Weiss is responsible for the YapStone business units, operational management, and global growth of the company. With a focus on YapStone’s go-to market strategy, David leads and manages multiple functions, including corporate and business development, M&A, sales and partnerships, payment operations, IT and corporate infrastructure, legal and compliance, recruiting, finance and customer support. Prior to joining YapStone, David spent 20 years in investment banking, primarily with Citigroup, where he specialized in M&A transactions, strategic partnerships, JVs, public and private equity offerings, working capital facilities, leveraged finance and investment grade bank and bond deals. In his tenure, David executed over 100 transactions, representing approximately $75 billion in value, across a broad range of industries, including technology, payments, sustainability, energy, infrastructure and industrial. David graduated Cum Laude in Government from Harvard University
EVP/Chief Financial Officer
Jerry Ulrich is responsible for the financial and accounting functions at Yapstone. Prior to joining the Company, Jerry served over 10 years as the Chief Financial Officer and Chief Administrative Officer for Blackhawk Network Holdings, Inc., a leading payments and prepaid products company. His responsibilities at Blackhawk included all financial functions including risk management, treasury, accounting, reporting and investor relations, as well as human resources, information technology and operations. He helped lead Blackhawk’s IPO in 2013 and participated extensively in M&A transactions and the company’s global expansion to nearly $20 billion in transaction volume. Jerry also served over 5 years as the Vice President Operations and Chief Financial Officer of Xign Corporation, an electronic payments service provider, which was acquired by JP Morgan Chase in 2007. Prior to Xign, Jerry held various senior executive and financial roles in privately-held and publicly-held networking and computer technology companies. He started his career in public accounting with Ernst and Young. Mr. Ulrich received a B.S. in Business Administration with a major in accounting from The Ohio State University.
EVP/General Counsel and Secretary/Chief Compliance Officer
David Durant serves as General Counsel, Secretary and Chief Compliance Officer for YapStone. In his role, he manages and leads YapStone’s legal, compliance, and government affairs initiatives. With significant experience and expertise in legal compliance and payments, David leads the company’s money transmitter license process in the U.S. as well the payment institutions license in Ireland. Prior to YapStone, David spent ten years at Blackhawk Network Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: HAWK), where he led Blackhawk’s legal, compliance (initially serving as CCO) and government affairs initiatives and built a team of over 40 in-house legal, compliance and government affairs personnel. During his tenure, David also led Blackhawk’s legal efforts through an IPO and spin-off from Safeway Inc., as Blackhawk expanded into over 20 countries and grew to 1,800 employees and $1.4 billion in annual revenue. David also served as General Counsel, Secretary and Director of Blackhawk Network California, Inc., and led the efforts of Blackhawk Network California to secure money transmitter licenses in 48 U.S. jurisdictions and Puerto Rico. In February 2015, he was named one of the Top 10 Payments Lawyers by Paybefore.com. David received his J.D. from University of Chicago Law School.
EVP/Chief Technology Officer
Sanjay Saraf leads YapStone’s technology organization and is responsible for Product Engineering, Infrastructure and Operations, Information Security, R&D, and Product Innovation. In his role, Sanjay is focused on all YapStone product platforms, including global pay-in and pay-out payments platforms, fraud management systems, partner API platforms, and big data and analytics. Prior to YapStone, Sanjay was Chief Technology Officer at Western Union’s Digital Ventures where he led product engineering focused on digital transformation. In his tenure, he led development of an advanced fraud management system, digital payments platform with support for all major global funding methods, global payout platform that connected over 2 billion bank accounts and digital wallets, a massive Hadoop big data platform, and consumer facing web and mobile apps in over 50 countries. Prior to Western Union, Sanjay was VP of eBusiness at Symantec, leading a global eCommerce platform that generated over $2B in revenue. Sanjay holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Engineering and has authored several patents in digital payments and fraud management.
EVP/Chief People Officer
Debra Tenenbaum is responsible for leading the human resources and internal communications functions at YapStone, focusing on the enablement and engagement of YapStone employees. With over 20 years of business leadership, human resources and executive coaching experience, Debra has led a number of high-growth technology companies, including SGI, Netscape, and Loudcloud/Opsware, through corporate acquisitions and IPO’s. Most recently, Debra was the Chief Learning Officer at Epicor Software where she focused on cultivating management and employee development. Debra received a Masters degree in HROD from the University of San Francisco and a BA degree from the University of California at Santa Barbara.
EVP/Chief Risk Officer
Mike Gramz is responsible for leading risk management functions at Yapstone focused on delivering innovation that provides world class risk and fraud solutions making it safe, secure, simpler and easier for our partners and customers to process transactions. Mike is a payments industry veteran spending much of his career focused on credit, fraud, loss provisioning and reserves, compliance and regulatory policy, PCI, and data security. He has over 27 years of financial services experience at such FinTech companies as Merchant e-Solutions (a Cielo company) as Chief Risk Officer and Board Director and 17 of those years at Bank of America where he was Chief Risk Officer for Bank of America Merchant Services (BAMS) and a key strategic contributor in the formation of the acquiring joint venture with First Data Corporation. As a risk executive for Bank of America over the years he was responsible for Global Corporate Banking product risk, oversaw card brand acquiring relationships, led Global Treasury Services compliance, and was accountable for all consumer and corporate compliance functions in Canada and Latin America including businesses in Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, and Mexico.
Peter Rowan is responsible for leading YapStone’s International Operations and Global Customer Support, based in the company’s Drogheda, Ireland office. With a 35-year career that has spanned roles with UK Law Enforcement as well as global leaders in the payments industry, including PayPal and Visa, Peter is focused on scaling international operations and expanding global customer support to 24/7/365 to support YapStone partners. Previous to YapStone, Peter was Global Director of Trust & Safety at Twitter where he was led global teams across 3 offices, Dublin, San Francisco and Singapore. Peter received an MBA degree from The Henley Business School in the UK.