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A Case for Women to Lead in Tech

Driven by the pursuit of disruptive innovation, Lista Co-founder Khriztina Lim sets her sights on revolutionizing how Filipinos manage their money.

There has never been a better time for female leadership in the Philippines. Findings from the World Economic Forum’s 2022 Global Gender Gap Report show that women constitute 43% of all people hired in leadership roles in the country – making the Philippines as the country with the highest representation of women in leadership across the APAC region, and 4th in the world. 

Many of the country’s top conglomerates and household name brands have female leaders. However, Filipina women are also making a name for themselves in the startup space as well. 

One of those women is Khriztina Lim. No stranger to the fast-paced nature of startups, she earned her stripes at Grab where she started out as a Marketing Executive shortly after the superapp had begun operations in the country. She went on to become the Country Marketing Head for GrabTaxi Philippines where she was instrumental in fostering strategic partnerships – leading to a huge increase in both users and market share before capping off her tenure with Grab in a regional role that saw her handle several markets aside from the Philippines. 

Passionate about disruptive innovation, after leading the charge to revolutionize mobility in the country, Khriztina set her sights on addressing another challenge many Filipinos face: financial management. 

Many businesses in the local micro, small, and medium scale enterprises (MSME) sector still use manual logbooks for tracking day-to-day finances. Filipino households also cling to traditional methods such as having an alkansya (piggy bank) for savings and a listahan (list) for keeping tabs on debt and expenses. 

To optimize financial management through technology, together with her co-founder Aaron Villegas and Khriztina Lim launched Lista – a free financial management app that provides individuals and businesses with everything they need to manage budgets, savings, debt, profits, and other financial transactions. By making it convenient for anyone to stay on top of their finances, Khriztina aims for every Filipino to set out on the path to financial flexibility where saving money and achieving financial goals are firmly within reach. 

“The goal is not just to create a financial tool to assist Filipinos but for our app to be a reliable partner in helping individuals and MSMEs alike achieve their financial milestones,” she said. “There are always challenges that surround innovation, but grit, passion, and a firm belief that Filipinos deserve better helps me thrive. Filipinos deserve a future where everyone can afford to have savings, emergency funds, and more, and Lista aims to make that happen.”

Since its launch last November, Lista has raised more than $5.1 million in its latest fund-raising round to accelerate the expansion of its services.

With the goal of simplifying financial management for all Filipinos firmly in her sights, Khriztina encourages aspiring women entrepreneurs to confidently venture into new businesses and industries. In today’s fast-paced world where digitalization drives innovation, Khriztina believes that there are many opportunities abound in the world of tech for women to thrive and make their names. 

“Digitalization has become a significant factor in the everyday lives of Filipinos. More and more, women leaders are becoming more visible, supported, and spearheading the task of improving the lives of Filipinos, one innovation at a time, she said. “As long as you have a vision and a plan, anything is possible.” 

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