Clearco CEO steps down as firm cuts staff

Michele Romanow, CEO and co-founder of Canadian growth capital firm Clearco, has stepped down from her role, according to media reports. Romanow will transition to the role of executive co-chair and remain on the company’s board, with Andrew Curtis, who has recently been working in an advisory capacity for Clearco, replacing her as CEO.

The Toronto-based company is also reportedly laying off 30% of its workforce across all its teams, just five months after it cut 125 jobs due to significant economic headwinds. This latest round of layoffs brings Clearco’s approximate headcount down to 140 from 500 last year.

Romanow has been quoted as saying that the firm is under the same pressures as every other company to become a profitable business. She also indicated that such seasons make it necessary to make the hard decisions in order to continue to be ahead of the curve.

In October of last year, the fintech raised $30 million from its founders and existing investors. Before that, in July 2021, Clearco raised $215 million in a Series C funding round led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund 2 at a valuation of $2 billion.

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