David Zalik shuns Silicon Valley pretensions, focuses on what works

Even though the bursting of the dot-com bubble culled some of the crazier elements from the world of tech, the sheer inertia and cash inflows that the industry has enjoyed have continued to give rise to a culture of excess and pretension.

This is most apparent in the corporate cultures of some of the largest Silicon Valley corporations where destructive Marxist folk heroes like Che Guevara are often held in higher regard than Milton Freidman or Adam Smith. Corporate headquarters are often adorned with such out-of-place accoutrements as ping-pong tables, video-game arcades, beanbag chairs and even on-site beer dispensers. This college-dorm atmosphere may help in recruiting hard-partying frat members. But its overall utility in the business world is highly questionable.

GreenSky Credit takes the no-nonsense approach

But GreenSky Credit founder David Zalik saw through all that from the beginning. And his sensible approach to business went much further than just surface appearances. Zalik has consciously eschewed all of the trendy techy stuff, creating a headquarters with 650 people that looks like any other serious Midwestern enterprise. And in its business, GreenSky Credit has never sought to tear down the system and replace it with some financial utopia. Far from it, Zalik has concentrated on working within the system, using technology to eliminate frictions and create a more responsive and efficient marketplace.

This goal has been met by almost any standard. GreenSky is currently worth an estimated $5 billion. The company does approximately that number in loans every year while growing at a phenomenal rate of around 100 percent each year. Zalik has accomplished this by doing the exact opposite of what many of his wayward fintech competitors were attempting.

GreenSky loans money only to those in the prime borrower category. The typical GreenSky customer has a FICO score of 760, making them among the most creditworthy applicants. And this high quality of borrower has enabled the company to make an easy case to lenders to partner with it. With some of the largest and most trusted banks in the nation underwriting its loans, Zalik and his company are poised to stay at the top of the fintech game for the foreseeable future.

https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20180806005296/en/American-Express-GreenSky-Team-Fuel-Business-Growth