2021 review – What happened this year at Cardo AI
As we are starting the new year, we took a look back at what we were able to accomplish during 2021. January is an ideal time to reflect on what we’ve achieved so far and what we expect to do in the months ahead.
Keep on reading to discover more about how 2021 has been like here at Cardo AI!
Our Key Moments
2021 has been a big year for Cardo AI: we have reached amazing milestones and achievements that have brought us closer to our main mission: revolutionizing the private debt market with technology powered by artificial intelligence.
Let’s look at some of the major accomplishments of the year:
Our business results
Our technology has helped clients to make smarter decisions, as they are able to analyse quickly more data and gain better insights, lower their operational costs, and further scale their operation. With the same team, our clients are now able to manage 2.5x more assets while encountering 95% less errors.
30+ # Transactions: Alternative Funds, Sub-funds, SPVs
3Bn+ € Amount: SME loans, Consumer Loans, Trade Receivables, PA Loans, etc.
600K+ # Loans: 35 countries, 22 sectors
Becoming a PRI signatory
We are 100% committed to promoting responsible investment.
Our mission is to support our clients in having a real influence on sustainable investing and integrate ESG elements into the private debt market. One of the ways we hope to accomplish this is through our future products, which will allow managing ESG scoring and rating data from both external and internal sources. Find more by reading our article about becoming a PRI signatory.
Talent & People
One of the things we really are proud of is the fact that we’ve had more than 40 new joiners this year, doubling our team compared to 2020. Both senior and junior talents have joined our teams for Business Analytics & Development, Data Science & Engineering, Financial, Marketing, and Software Engineering.
Reaching 50 talents
Back in 2018, we started CARDO AI with a small group of people and the mission to bring technology into the private debt market. In September 2021, we reached 50 amazing talents working across three different countries and helping solve the biggest challenges in private debt!
Opening new offices
As we have welcomed many new employees, we also needed to expand our working spaces. We opened a new office in Tirana, Albania (where we now have two) and we moved to a bigger office in Milan, Italy.
Benefits and initiatives
In 2021 we introduced several new initiatives and benefits for our talents, with the objective of further improving our working environment and making Cardo AI a great place to grow and develop your career.
Work-Life balance officer
We want to make sure that each employee has the perfect environment to thrive & grow in his chosen career.
That is why we appointed a Work-Life Balance Officer who, alongside his activities as Growth Manager, will ensure a healthy work-life balance at Cardo and find ways to mitigate and train people in managing stress, burnout, and overtime work.
Remote and Flexible Working
At Cardo we give team members maximum flexibility to choose the setup and schedule that works best for them, whether that’s at home, at one of our offices, or at another location. We truly believe that giving our employees the freedom to choose where and when they work best can boost long-term motivation, happiness, and overall productivity.
Stock option plan
With our stock option plan we give the opportunity to employees to become part of the ownership of the company and become a real shareholder of Cardo.
We give the opportunity to employees who have been with us for more than a year to relocate to their office of choice, be it Milan, Tirana, or London!
Intrapreneurship in Cardo AI
“Intrapreneurship in Cardo AI” means that our team members can propose new ideas to launch new products, features, or new technologies. If the idea is selected, a side development team is created to come to MVP and production stage.
Cardo AI Startup Incubator
With this initiative we plan to select 2/3 ideas per cohort and everyone that wants to follow any of the startups is free to do so. At the end of the program, both Cardo AI and everyone from our team can invest in the startups, so we all become entrepreneurs.
We launched the second edition of Cardo Kickstart, a program aimed at supporting fresh graduates in their transition from university halls to the labor market in Tirana.
We were able to organize two amazing company trips – a great opportunity to connect with each other, relax and recharge for the upcoming challenges! team building and getting to know each other more. Here are some pictures of our two trips, the first one to Drimades, in June 2021, and the second one to Theth, in September.
One year of tech innovation
Virtual Data Room
We have integrated a VDR system into our Securitization platform, allowing our clients to securely store critical papers, contracts, and data that they are willing to share with a third party.
Thanks to Cardo AI’s VDR, originators and arrangers of securitizations are now able to:
- Ensure quality, accessibility, and reliability of data in all the stages of the transaction.
- Offer to potential investors a fully digital Due Diligence experience.
- Keep data always up-to-date to grant full transparency.
Marti the Chatbot
With increasing interest and research on Artificial Intelligence (AI), Natural Language Processing (NLP), and machine learning, bots are becoming progressively more efficient. In the fintech market, bots can support the user along its journey on applications, programs, and software.
For this reason, in 2021 we launched Marti, Cardo AI’s virtual assistant. Currently, the chatbot is integrated into our digital lending product to guide our users and help them navigate the platform, making it very fast and easy to access information and gain insights on private debt investments and operations.
IDP is a service that handles Authentication & Authorization, in a focused way, in a cluster infrastructure. This way, we can have a single User Base for different applications or services while they focus more on providing features and functionalities.
Some of the main features it offers are:
- Single Sign-on – This allows a user to access multiple applications in the cluster with the same set of credentials.
- Granular permissions structure – Roles, Functionalities, Permission.
- Default Deny – This means that explicit permissions have to be given to each user for everything that they can access.
- Temporary user access – This feature allows the creation of temporary tokens.
There are many initiatives we want to carry out this year, starting with the first one in January: The Women in Tech event.
It will be an online event with the objective of underlining females’ contribution to the tech industry, their participation in the tech community along with the challenges they face in becoming part of it. In addition, we want to give emphasis to female entrepreneurship and leadership in technology. Discover more on the LinkedIn page of the event.
We are very proud of everything we accomplished in 2021, and we can’t wait to work towards new goals and achievements in 2022!
Want to stay updated about our initiatives and products? Don’t forget to follow us on Linkedin!
About the author
Altin Kadareja is the CEO and co-founder of Cardo AI. Prior to founding Cardo AI, Altin has covered several investment and risk management roles at BlackRock, Prometeia, Intesa Sanpaolo and Allianz Bank Financial Advisors across different European markets. He holds a master of science degree in Economics and Management of Innovation and Technology from Bocconi University in Milan and followed an executive program in Risk Management at Imperial Business School in London.