Mobile banking pioneer Alistair Lukies, the co-founder of Monitise – one of the hottest tech companies in the UK – has been made a Commander of the British Empire (CBE) for his services to banking and charity.
Alistair is no stranger to awards and recognition. In 2006 he was recognised as a ‘Technology Pioneer’ by the World Economic Forum, and in 2011 he was named Entrepreneur of the Year at the Growing Business Awards. Most recently, in January 2014, he was appointed as a Business Ambassador for the financial services industry by the UK government. The news that he has been inducted into one of the most prestigious orders of merit will come as little surprise to those who have followed his glittering career.
Alistair left school at 16 with four GCSEs and he embarked on a professional rugby career that saw him play hooker for Saracens and London Irish. His rugby career came to a premature end in 1995 when he suffered a multiple leg fracture, but it was this setback that catalysed his transition from the heart of the scrum to being at the forefront of the mobile banking revolution.
Prior to forming Monitise in 2002, Alistair worked for the sports hospitality company ICM and then joined Epolitix, a news portal covering Westminster politics. Monitise developed and launched the world’s first mobile banking, payments and commerce ecosystem. The so-called light bulb moment came when he discovered from his co-founder, Steve Atkinson, that mobile phones outnumbered bank accounts by 3 to 1.
Today, Monitise provides the technology for mobile banking to over 350 financial institutions and 28 million users worldwide. Amazingly, the business now employs in excess of 500 people and has a value of approximately £250 million.
Alongside supporting the development of mobile banking worldwide, Monitise has also had an impact on its local community and research into breast cancer. The business has given extensive support to the breast cancer trials unit at Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow over a number of years.
Commenting on receiving his award to the Herts and Essex Observer he said, “To be awarded a CBE for services to mobile banking and charity is a great honour and one which I am incredibly humbled to receive. Monitise has, from the day it began, strived to set new frontiers in mobile banking and payments technology in the UK and around the world.
“As well as being a personal honour for me, I also see this as recognition for the entire Monitise team who work so diligently to enable mobile money to do so many important things in people’s lives. We are genuinely at the beginning of our journey and to receive such an award at this stage simply adds to the energy and passion I feel towards the work we do.”
Alistair’s combination of accomplished entrepreneurialism coupled with his commitment to generous charitable contributions made him an ideal candidate for a Queen’s Honour.
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