The Greek-born, U.K. raised, U.S. immigrant Nicky Goulimis is a co-founder and COO of Nova Credit.
Nicky Goulimis was born in Greece and her parents immigrated to the U.K. when she was young. She grew up in the U.K. and has talked about the impact of watching her father build a software company in the U.K. as an immigrant.
She attended Cambridge University where she studied English Literature and Management studies. From there, Nicky began a career in international development with Ethiopia's Ministry of Agriculture where she worked on its smallholder farmer financial access initiatives as a Senior Programme Associate.
In 2010 Nicky joined Bain & Company as a consultant, where she served a number of European retail banks.
In 2014, Nicky pursued a MBA from Stanford University and found she had to start her financial life over again. Her pain was shared by many other international students at Stanford, but specifically Misha Esipov and Loek Janssen. Together, these three set up Nova Credit.
Nicky has talked about how she never considered a startup. She assumed, on beginning her MBA, that she would return to the world of agriculture she'd come from. But the idea came from a class project and the three founders decided to pursue it. For Nicky, she's found it difficult to change her personal narrative around herself as someone who would do a startup.
Together, Nicky, Misha Esipov and Loek Janssen founded Nova Credit in 2015 to help immigrants to the U.S. to bring their established credit histories with them. They work to connect U.S. credit bureaus to foreign credit bureaus in what they've described as a win-win for consumers and banks. For consumers, with a credit history, they are able to apply for credit cards, rent apartments, and buy cars; and for the banks, having credit histories allows them access to customers they wouldn't have otherwise.