1. Tell us a bit about your background, roots and DNA!
I consider myself a Londoner as I have been in this city for the longest of anywhere. Originally I came from Thailand and grew up in Sweden. When I came to London all I had was £300 and a suitcase. I started training to be a chartered accountant and worked in investment banking. After 15 years I had reached the position of internal audit director at UBS. My family were very happy with that, but it has always been my dream to run my own business, so in 2016 I left my job to create Tapoly, which provides on-demand insurance for freelancers, contractors and small businesses. We also offer bespoke insurance products for sharing economy platforms.
My values are to work hard, to be true to my words and to always contribute. My daily routine is I wake up every morning with a list of things to do and I insist on finishing them even if it means staying up until 3am. Because I grew up in Sweden, I suppose I picked up some of the good qualities that the Swedish have which are trustworthiness and caring a lot about the society I live in. I recycle where possible, I cycle to reduce pollution and I give back when I can. Not so much financially as I spend most of my money building Tapoly, but I have spent a few years mentoring and coaching others. As a matter of fact, I served as the chairman of the Cultural Awareness Network at UBS and this year I will be mentoring female founders at the Female Founders community, it’s a European-wide network that supports women in business. I understand the importance of helping others.
2.What’s your passion in life and in business? Your mission and vision?
My passion in life is to build Tapoly from the ground up. Although if you had asked me this question a few years ago you may have got a different answer. For now I love the feeling of waking up in the morning and not knowing what awaits me. I like the excitement, and the thrill and fulfillment from the sense of achievement when things go right. Outside work I cycle, I love to ski and occasionally I do Bikram yoga.
My vision is for Tapoly to be one of the largest on-demand insurance platforms that caters for the needs of global consumers, for all those who can’t get insurance, or those who can but not at a reasonable price, or those who will simply go without because they can’t be bothered to fill in lengthy forms.
3.What was the most challenging/difficult/terrifying period in your entrepreneur career?
When you start a new business, money will always be an issue. Just a few months ago, I thought I would lose Tapoly. My co-founder and I had been without a job and income for over a year. We were both running low on our savings. He was considering going back to work if I didn’t raise funding by the end of the year. Luckily, I did, so we are fine for now, and we have a growing team to support us.
Also, starting a business is always difficult, but starting one in a heavily regulated and capital intensive industry. Such as insurance is taking the word difficult to another level. Last year nobody knew who we were, and yet within a year Tapoly received several Insurtech and Fintech awards as well as being mentioned in high-profile publications. I was also recently named as one of the Top 10 Insurtech Female Influencers by The Insurance Institute. I can’t tell you how happy I am. Of course, all these achievements are not without hard work. My co-founder and I were working 24/7 to achieve all this.
The Tapoly website is due to launch in May this year, and it would be fantastic to get the support of the High Profile community. After May you can go online and get a full stack of commercial insurance. It can be for a single day or for a whole year if you need it. All our professional indemnity (UK only) cover includes cyber liability. Which is a big plus if you have a digital or online business. If you need insurance sooner than May, then tell us. What your requirements are and we will get a quote out to you. We would love to hear your opinions in any case.
4.Who do you admire and why? What would you ask them if you met them in person?
I saw a video of Arnold Schwarzenegger giving a speech a few weeks ago. Really admire his ability to withstand those that say no to him and his determination to be successful in life. I agree with all his points. Also love the fact that he embraces his accent, but what resonates with me. The most is his point about how the things that people said were his liabilities later became his assets. Inspired by his determination to be number one and his persistence in pursuing his goals.
If I met Schwarzenegger in person I probably would ask to take a picture with him. And I ask for his permission to post it on my social media. You probably expect me to ask him something more intelligent, but there is already so much written about him. If I want to know something I would simply Google it. Anything not in the public domain is private, so I will respect his privacy.
5.What’s your message for your younger self?
If I could go back in time to meet myself in my teens I would tell me to love myself, to take care of myself better, and to be proud of my achievements. This is easier said than done. I’m in the process of building the concept of loving myself into my daily routine, it’s still work in progress though.
6.How do people get in contact with you?
Please do get in touch, you can email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org for inquiries about our products or feedback. Alternatively, you can also visit our website at www.tapoly.com for more information.