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Ex-chancellor Lord Hammond becomes chair of fintech Railsr

Hammond Railsr
Image credit: Sean Aidan Calderbank / Shutterstock

Embedded finance fintech Railsr has appointed former chancellor of the exchequer, Lord Philip Hammond, as its chair less than a year after being rescued from collapse.

Railsr, which implements financial tools and services into client businesses, was once valued at almost $1bn before facing the brink of collapse last year.

Railsr was ultimately acquired by a shareholder consortium which secured £20m in additional funding for the firm last October.

Incoming chairman Hammond previously served as chancellor during the premiership of Theresa May from 2016 to 2019. Before that Hammond held several cabinet positions under David Cameron including foreign secretary.

Since leaving government, Hammond has held roles at a handful of commercial firms, including a non-executive director position at OakNorth Bank and the chair of crypto firm Copper Technologies.

Hammond was also appointed as an advisor to the £1bn Fintech Growth Fund – a fintech investment vehicle – in 2022.

“I’m delighted to be joining Railsr at this pivotal moment in its development,” said Hammond. “I am confident that the business has a strong future ahead of it and that it will become the preeminent provider of embedded finance.”

The outgoing Railsr chair, Ricky Haythornthwaite, is set to take over as chairman of banking giant NatWest effective from 15 April.

“The company will benefit enormously from Lord Hammond’s extensive business and political experience at this key juncture,” Haythornthwaite said.

“I am optimistic about the future of the business, with such a clear strategy and strong leadership team.”

Hammond’s appointment, first reported by Sky News, follows another ex-chancellor, George Osborne, joining crypto exchange Coinbase as an advisor.