In this instalment of People of Privalgo, we meet one of our founders, Commercial Director, Matthew Clarke.
Known around the watercooler as the King of Currency, Matt has over 13 years experience in deliverable foreign exchange and business development. He thrives on building long-lasting relationships with his clients and is an integral part to the success of Privalgo. Long live the King!
Tell us a bit about yourself?
After graduating from University, I spent a year travelling around the world. Once I returned to the UK, I moved to London. Shortly after, I started my career at Foxtons as an Estate Agent, and it was there that I found my passion for building and maintaining client relationships and working within a team environment.
I then moved into Financial Services, entering the foreign exchange market and joined the sales team of Corporate FX. I loved working in the City and the fast-paced nature of the FX market and never looked back. After having success in acquiring and managing client relationships, I was promoted to various roles managing sales and set up the first International team which spearheaded the growth into the Dutch and Spanish markets.
Tell us about your story with Privalgo?
I worked with the other four founders Stewart, Dan, Zeb and Richard for nearly 12 years and we had always worked really well and had a lot of fun together. The marketplace was changing, and technology was starting to play a much bigger role.
We saw that a number of industry incumbents were being restrained by outdated technology systems. We felt there was a tremendous opportunity for a firm to get a better balance of combining market-leading tech with good old-fashioned customer service focusing on building relationships.
This is how Privalgo was born and why I joined the other founders to help develop the proposition for Privalgo and create a world-class Front of House team.
And your current role?
My role in the business is looking after our Relationship Managers and Sales team and making sure that the whole of our Front of House is running like a well-oiled machine. This encompasses all the touchpoints for our clients, ensuring their experience and journey is of the highest standard and they are always happy to come back to us and refer other clients.
The role requires the spinning of a lot of plates with my focus on switching between staff training and development, meeting clients, and providing feedback and insight to make sure we are constantly improving and refining our proposition.
What’s your secret to building a successful client relationship?
A successful relationship is built on trust and transparency. This is not something that can be built overnight and it takes time and a consistent demonstration of these values in order for you to establish a strong client relationship.
Something I am proud of is that some of the best client relationships I have are the ones that I first engaged with 12 years ago at the start of my career. These relationships have grown stronger over the years and developed into genuine friendships.
Biggest highlight so far?
This is tough as there have been many highlights across the Privalgo journey so far – from the first private client trade, we did back in December 2018 to the signing of our first large strategic partner in the summer of last year. Exceeding £1billion of client transactions was also a highlight, as it made me realise that we had developed a platform and proposition that truly delights clients which in turn verified our initial vision.
Away from Eastcheap
Away from the office, I enjoy spending time with my young family and going on long walks and keeping fit. I am also a big sports fan and love watching football and playing golf which is increasingly harder to do with a growing family!