October 12, 2020

One on One Spotlight: Ahmed Siddiqui

What is your job title?

VP, Product

What does your day-to-day look like at Branch?

I spend a lot of time working with partners, be it customers or vendors. I also spend a bit of time thinking about what is next for Branch and trying to figure out with partners what we need to build next.

My day to day partners within Branch are usually folks from the engineering, data, compliance, and product teams. Together we’re focused on building the things that will move the company forward.

What did you want to be when you grew up? 

A building architect. 🏢

What was your first job? 

Inbound sales for a Catalog sales company called Damark in Brooklyn Park, MN.

The first thing you saved up to buy as a kid? 

We didn’t have allowances growing up so more or less we had to cry and beg for things from our parents. I think the original Nintendo Entertainment System with Super Mario Brothers and Duck Hunt was the first major purchase that I really had to negotiate, but we did get it 2 years after all of my friends got it...

3 words would you use to describe yourself: 

Curious, Optimistic, Nerdy.

When you’re not working, what are your favorite things to do?

I’m pretty lucky that I have a job that I love. Because I love what I do, I tend to work a lot. The reality is that with any fast growing startup, there really isn’t much time for anything else. I have 3 little kids (7 year old, 5 year old, and a 1 year old), so most of my free time goes to them.

I also published a book recently called, “The Anatomy of the Swipe: Making Money Move”, which is all about Payments and Fintech, another topic I am very passionate about. Payments and Fintech are actually really complicated and I wanted to help engineers and entrepreneurs understand in a simple way, which is why I wrote the book.

The app (aside from Branch) you can’t live without? 

Robinhood, Flipboard, or LinkedIn

Favorite time of the day:

I wouldn’t call myself a “morning person” but I do enjoy the quiet of the mornings, when there’s time to make some breakfast and get a cup of coffee. ☕

The items you have in your fridge at all times:

Kerrygold butter, eggs, and milk.

A song you will always dance to when it comes on:

I don’t dance but more recently, when the song “Youngblood” comes on the radio, I will crank it up.

Favorite part about working for Branch:

The promise of what Branch can become, and the problems we are aiming to solve. First of all, the fact that we can make a real impact on the lives of people who are living paycheck to paycheck and help them break out of the cycle. I love this concept—that we can fundamentally help them get ahead in life. Not many companies can claim to even say that, let alone do it and have concrete examples of how we help our users get ahead.

I’ve been pretty fortunate to have had the opportunity to work in Silicon Valley. I got a chance to work in venture capital and then also work for a “tech unicorn” prior to coming to Branch. For this reason, I knew that the next company I joined had to be just as special -- if not more -- as the last company I was at (Marqeta), and I think I found it at Branch.

I’m inspired by our CEO, Atif. I’ve never met a founder with such conviction in solving a BIG problem. He’s brilliant, and I think he’s been able to build an amazing team to take his vision into reality.

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