Forward Financing Company Overview
Forward Financing is a Boston-based financial technology company and a leading provider of alternative financing solutions to under-served small businesses. Managing a small business is challenging, and we help owners spend less time finding capital and more time growing their business. While a typical bank loan is an arduous, months-long process, our simple application and dedicated account representatives help our customers to receive the funding they need within 24 hours. Trusted by more than 23,000 small businesses nationwide, Forward Financing expands access to credit to Main Street and helps them thrive.
Every year since 2017, Forward Financing has been named by Inc. Magazine and the Boston Business Journal as one of the fastest growing companies in Massachusetts. In 2020, we've been recognized by BuiltinBoston and Boston Business Journal on their exclusive rankings of the Best Places to Work in Boston.
Are You Ready to Move Your Career Forward?
We are a diverse and driven group of over 80 people, located in the heart of Boston’s Financial District. Our employees come to work knowing they are helping thousands of small businesses while advancing their own careers. If this sounds like something you’d like to be a part of, come join us!
Jobs at Forward Financing
Co-Founder & CEO
Justin Bakes is the Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Forward Financing, a fast-growing financial technology company providing working capital to small and medium-sized businesses throughout the United States.
Prior to founding Forward Financing in 2012, Justin served as Director of Mergers and Acquisitions for Watsco, Inc. (NYSE:WSO), the largest independent distributor of air conditioning, heating and refrigeration equipment in the US. From 2008 to 2011, Justin led acquisitions that were instrumental in Watsco doubling its revenue. Before Watsco, Justin was an investment banker with UBS Investment Bank where he advised U.S. and European financial institutions, private equity firms, and multinational corporations on mergers, acquisitions and financings in Europe and Latin America.
Originally from South Florida, Justin graduated from Boston College in 2003 with a Bachelor of Science in Finance. He is an active member of Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) and currently resides in Boston, Massachusetts.
Michael Spinello joined Forward Financing as President in January 2018 after having partnered with the company as an investor and Senior Advisor since early 2017. In his role as President, Michael collaborates with the leadership team to help guide the strategic direction of the company, with most operating units reporting to him.
Prior to joining Forward Financing, Michael spent more than a decade in the alternative investment management space, working as a financial analyst and portfolio manager for the long/short equity hedge funds Perry Capital and Hillside Capital Partners. Michael began his career as an investment banking analyst at UBS Investment Bank, where he helped advise financial institutions on various corporate and strategic matters.
Michael graduated from Boston College in 2003 with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics.
Senior Director, People & Culture
Shannon Braley is the Senior Director, People & Culture at Forward Financing, and she is responsible for human resources functional areas, including talent acquisition, performance management, compensation planning and providing guidance to the leadership team.
Prior to joining Forward Financing in August 2017, Shannon served as a human resources manager for multiple early-stage biotechnology companies in the Boston area. Before deciding to specialize in human resources, Shannon developed a broad business background through roles in marketing, operations, and administration, where she directly supported and interfaced with executive leadership. From these diverse experiences, Shannon quickly realized that finding and developing the best people and cultivating engaging corporate culture was her true passion.
Shannon was born and raised in the Boston area, and is a 2004 graduate of Northeastern University. Outside of work you can find Shannon spending time with her husband and daughters, working out at her local spin studio and traveling as much as possible.
Vice President, Strategy & Finance
Eugene Wong is the Vice President, Strategy & Finance at Forward Financing where he leads all initiatives related to strategic growth and finance.
Prior to joining Forward Financing in 2018, Eugene was a Vice President in the Sponsor Finance Group at Silicon Valley Bank (NASDAQ:SIVB). In this role, he provided leveraged debt financing to private equity firms in support of their acquisitions of software companies. Before Silicon Valley Bank, Eugene was an investment banker with Goldman Sachs in the Financial Institutions Group where he advised U.S. financial institutions on mergers, acquisitions and financings. He began his career at Silicon Valley Bank.
Originally from the Boston area, Eugene graduated from Wesleyan University with a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics & Economics and from Yale University with a Master of Business Administration. He currently resides in the suburbs of Boston.
Alexis Shapiro is the General Counsel of Forward Financing, where she oversees all legal functions of the Company.
Prior to joining Forward Financing in April 2018, Alexis was a partner at the Boston-based law firm Goodwin Procter, where she advised companies and their officers and directors on strategies for avoiding liability in complex business disputes, with a particular emphasis in the financial services industry. Prior to Goodwin, Alexis was an attorney at Testa, Hurwitz & Thibeault in Boston, and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher and Flom in New York City.
Originally from New Jersey, Alexis graduated from Colgate University with a Bachelor of Arts, and from Boston College Law School with a Juris Doctorate. She currently resides in the Boston area.
Vice President, Sales & Marketing
Jamie Waldinger is Vice President, Sales & Marketing at Forward Financing, where he focuses on building the company’s brand while continuously improving the customer experience.
Prior to joining Forward Financing, Jamie was Vice President and Head of Marketing at Constant Contact, an email marketing SaaS provider with 500,000 small business customers. In this role, Jamie owned the brand, operated a marketing funnel with one million visitors per month, and led initiatives to grow subscribers. Before Constant Contact, Jamie was Head of Strategy at Dunkin’ Brands where he led their expansion of consumer packaged goods into mass retail channels.
Jamie earned an MBA from MIT Sloan School of Management and a bachelor’s degree in marketing from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He lives north of Boston with his family and two dogs.
Vice President, Portfolio Risk & Analysis
Ohi Akhigbe is the Vice President, Portfolio Risk & Analysis at Forward Financing where he oversees the portfolio risk management, business intelligence, and predictive analytics departments.
Prior to joining Forward Financing in June 2019, Ohi spent more than a decade working in different areas of the asset management industry including public and private markets. Ohi began his career as an investment banking analyst at Goldman Sachs in its Financial Institutions group.
Ohi received an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a bachelor’s degree in finance and accounting from Boston College. He grew up In Lagos, Nigeria and currently resides in Boston, MA.
Brittney St. Germain
Vice President, Technology
Brittney joined Forward Financing in March 2020 as Vice President, Technology. In this role she is leading the engineering and product teams to deliver Forward Financing product and services.
Prior to joining Forward Financing, Brittney was VP of Engineering at PatientsLikeMe, where she led the Engineering, Product and Design teams. Together they built a massive, personalized health network that has generated more than 43 million data points, one of the largest extant sources of real-world health data. Before joining PatientsLikeMe in 2016, the bulk of Brittney’s 24-year software engineering career was in the Marketing Automation and Analytics space, including time at IBM, leading teams building enterprise Big Data SaaS customer analytics products.
Originally from Western Massachusetts, Brittney graduated from Boston University with a B.S. in Communications. She currently resides in the Boston area with her husband and two teenage boys.
Our six core values drive everything: how we hire candidates, support our team members, treat our customers, and make all big decisions. They keep us aligned on our mission and inspire us to grow and evolve. We’re proud of what we do and how we do it.
If you share the same values as us, come join our team!
Our people are innovative, collaborative, and inclusive. You’ll work alongside people who will support your personal and professional growth, and challenge you to bring your best every day. Whether you’re in our open office space or at one of our monthly team building events, you’ll feel the sense of community here right away.
We’re building a place where our people want to run to work every day. It’s not just the great perks and benefits. It’s our people, our purpose, and our passion for what we do that makes Forward Financing unlike anywhere else you’ve worked. But the perks definitely help!
Below are some of the fun things you can look forward to:
- Monthly team-building events, such as pasta making classes, murder mystery dinners, annual summer outing, Boston Harbor cruises, and holiday parties
- Weekly catered lunches and happy hours
- Plenty of snacks and beverages
- Generous paid time off
- Comprehensive medical, dental, and vision plans
- Gym reimbursements
- Learning & development, individual coaching, team training workshops, and industry conferences
- 401k contribution matching
- Competitive compensation, bonuses to reward hard work and results
Proudly located in the heart of Boston’s financial district, If you’re like us and love to eat amazing food, we’re also walking distance to great restaurants in the North End and Faneuil Hall. Or enjoy our expansive kitchen that’s always stocked with lots of snacks and beverages and take in the 360° views of Boston’s skyline. Wherever you’re coming from, we make the commute easy since we’re close to all major T and commuter rail lines.
PAY IT FORWARD
As a proud Boston-based company, we're committed to making a positive impact on our community and neighbors. From paid volunteer days, monthly company-sponsored volunteer events, and charitable donation matching, we make sure that nonprofits that are important to our employees are important to us too. In 2019, our team volunteered hundreds of hours to nonprofits and Forward Financing donated tens of thousands of dollars to local nonprofits that were nominated and selected by our employees.