Synchrony Financial - Carol Juel

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Company: Synchrony Financial, Stamford, CT, USA
Company Description:Synchrony Financial (NYSE: SYF), formerly GE Capital Retail Finance, is one of the nation’s premier consumer financial services companies. Our roots in consumer finance trace back to 1932, and today we are the largest provider of private label credit cards in the United States based on purchase volume and receivables.
Nomination Category:Individual Awards Categories
Nomination Sub Category:Innovator of the Year

Nomination Title: Carol Juel, Chief Information Officer

Describe for the judges the activities and accomplishments of the nominated woman since the beginning of July last year (up to 525 words):

Carol Juel, executive vice president and CIO of Synchrony Financial, leads a global IT team focused on technology innovation and execution to grow our business and deliver industry-leading solutions for our partners, customers and employees.

As mobile devices are increasingly being integrated into every aspect of consumers’ lives, new opportunities exist to leverage mobile technology to provide a positive customer experience during each stage of the retail transaction. Under Carol’s leadership, our IT team has developed mobile solutions that anticipate and solve for customer and partner needs and keep pace with rapidly evolving technologies.

Our mApply product allows shoppers to securely apply for credit on their mobile devices and instantly access their approved credit line (60% growth in mobile credit applications from Q2 2014 to Q2 2015). Our mService product allows customers to pay bills, access loyalty rewards, and service their accounts on their mobile devices (usage has increased by more than 50% year-over-year). Our digital card, a proprietary digital version of a Synchrony Bank private label credit card, enables in-store account lookup and mobile payments functionality. The digital card seamlessly integrates with Synchrony Financial’s mService product and is device agnostic, with no new hardware or mobile application download required. Successfully piloted in 2014 and launched for our CareCredit platform in March, the digital card has helped increase activations and transactions at a number of merchants.

Synchrony Financial is at the forefront of mobile payments technology and through our ongoing innovation and strategic partnerships we have developed a mobile platform that we can rapidly integrate across retailers and third-party digital wallets. This platform maintains the benefits our private label credit cards and patented Dual Cards offer in mobile wallets, including Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, MCX/CurrentC, and Android Pay. Through this approach, Synchrony Financial is helping shape the future of how private label credit cards work in mobile wallets.

Additionally, with Carol’s direction, the IT team developed responsive design applications for Synchrony Bank’s website that dynamically adapt to all mobile and desktop browsers, enabling the functionality of our website on a mobile device with no application download required. This has helped fuel Synchrony Bank’s retail deposits growth – from a $6 billion acquisition of MetLife deposits in January 2013 to more than $24 billion at the end of 2Q 2015.

Carol and her leadership team are also actively engaged with our Stamford, CT-based Innovation Station, a team focused exclusively on emerging technology, ideation and agile development of new products, particularly proprietary mobile solutions.

Recently the IT team worked with our Analytics team to form a second Innovation Station, focused on big data analytics, in our Chicago office. The Stamford and Chicago Innovation Station teams are working together on “Next Best Offer,” a proof of concept that analyzes data about a consumer’s shopping habits and will deliver personalized discount and loyalty offers via mobile devices.

Carol and her team also research emerging technologies and pursue strategic partnerships and investments. Two strategic investments over the past year include LoopPay, the company which developed Magnetic Secure Transmission technology and was acquired by Samsung in February, and GPShopper, an innovative developer of mobile apps with a focus on retail .

Provide a brief biography of the nominated woman (up to 125 words):

As Executive Vice President and CIO of Synchrony Financial, Carol Juel is committed to driving our overall IT strategy and vision, with a continuous focus on payments and technology innovation. As CIO of GE Capital Retail Finance from 2011-2014, she led growth for clients, dealers, and providers by developing strong technology partnerships, delivering innovative solutions, and driving the company’s digital transformation. During her ten years with GE, Carol held various senior IT leadership roles. Before joining GE, Carol spent nearly a decade in technology consulting at Accenture, focused on the financial services sector.

Throughout her career, Carol has leveraged her deep technology and financial services background to develop creative technology solutions to meet the needs of customers and clients.