Dr. Natalia Lyarskaya

Dr. Natalia Lyarskaya

Chief Data Officer, ZestMoney


Natalia brings 15 years of experience creating value from data, building data science and AI/ML capabilities across various companies and geographies by designing, developing, and employing data and analytics initiatives. Having worked in a number of start-ups, she’s built from scratch the teams, processes, data, platforms and, business applications of data and AI.

Holding a Ph.D. in Institutional Economics from the Sorbonne University, Natalia spent the first years of her career as a data analyst and statistical practitioner performing loads of data mining and hypothesis testing, as well as developing statistical models for credit risk assessment of customers for CRIF. Natalia continued her journey into the fast-developing fintech sector where she joined Wonga.com. There she had an opportunity to “play” with a big volume of structured and unstructured data, building ML solutions to evaluate credit risk, prevent fraudulent behavior, as well as develop rigorous ID verification products (image recognition, OCR of the documents) for the UK, as well as a number of highly regulated international markets.

Natalia has spent the last 6 years heading DS and AI teams, as Chief Data Officer, with the Indian fintech start-up ZestMoney, where she worked on identifying AI/ML use cases, developing team’s roadmaps, and establishing the data-driven culture within the company. As Women in AI (Switzerland) Tech lead, she is contributing to various tech initiatives – hackathons, research collaborations.
In her spare time, Natalia is mentoring young data scientists sharing her experience in data science and machine learning with the young people (AI/ML mentor at Teens in AI, Data Science mentor at Analytics India Magazine, etc.).

In 2020, Natalia was included in the DataIQ100, the first and only fully-curated power list of most influential people in data, shaping the future in a digital world.