CEO & Co-Founder
Neal Desai is the Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder for Kafene. Under Neal’s stewardship, Kafene has been named to Forbes’ list of America's Best Startup Employers of 2023, Built In's Best Places to Work in New York City list for 2023, and LendIt Fintech’s 2022 Industry Awards as a finalist. Prior to Kafene, Neal served as the CFO of specialty financing company Octane Lending – now a unicorn – where he began as the 11th employee. Before Octane, Neal spent 15 years on Wall Street as a derivatives trader for Susquehanna International Group, Merrill Lynch, Hard Eight Holdings, and Summit Securities Group. He received his bachelor’s degree from Princeton University in molecular biology, and his MBA from University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. Outside of Kafene, Neal is a member of the New York City Board of Trustees for Success Academy Charter Schools and recently took up martial arts.