Aug 31 2019

Novi in Tel Aviv: Building a Digital Wallet for a New Currency.

By Meta Careers
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If you have an internet connection today, you can access all kinds of useful services for little to no cost— whether you’re trying to keep in touch with family and friends, learn new things, or even start a business. But when it comes to saving, sending, and spending money, it’s not that simple. That’s why Facebook started Novi, a newly formed Facebook subsidiary whose goal is to provide financial services that will enable people to access and participate in the Diem network. The first product Novi will introduce is a digital wallet for Diem, a new global currency powered by blockchain technology.
To learn more about Novi, we spoke with two members of the Novi team in Tel Aviv, Sivanne G. and Ori M. They told us about the challenges they’re addressing, what Novi’s mission and impact mean to them, and the incredible opportunities that the Novi team in Tel Aviv has to offer.

Impact and Opportunity in Tel Aviv

“As Director of Fraud at Novi Tel Aviv, a big part of my role is using data science and data engineering to ensure Novi protects its customers from fraudulent activity as well as ensure it is compliant with applicable regulations such as Anti-Money Laundering (AML). We take a holistic approach to defining how we’ll detect bad actors in an effective way—we are dealing with people’s money and take our responsibility very seriously.
I chose to work on Novi in Tel Aviv because I strongly believe in our commitment to increasing financial inclusion worldwide in a safe and secure way. I am humbled to be part of a team that is driving this mission forward and excited by the opportunity to build a new product that can positively change people’s lives.
Novi is one of Facebook’s exciting new projects, so it’s incredible that a significant part of it is being developed in Tel Aviv. Building Novi and the team from the ground up is definitely a challenge, but it’s an exciting one. It’s a rare opportunity to work on a product that has this reach and potential positive impact at such an early stage. In Tel Aviv, we’re a cohesive team and highly collaborative. It’s like building a house—if you don’t work well together, nothing will happen. There is great energy and a sense of getting things done the right way.” —Sivanne G., Director, Head of Fraud

Why Novi is Unique

“I joined the Novi team because I really connected with the vision, technology, and the product’s ability to perform at a global scale. I support the engineering team here in Tel Aviv who builds the systems that keep track in real time of any suspicious activity or any attempts to manipulate users’ accounts, and prevent such activities. In addition, we are responsible for building the tools that enable our customer care team to provide assistance to our customers in cases where they encounter issues. There’s no bigger responsibility than building the tools to keep people’s money safe.
Years from now, we hope anyone will be able to use the Novi wallet for their everyday transactions like taking cabs, buying groceries, shopping online, and more. We want to help people who currently lack access to financial services or feel unsafe carrying cash, and provide them with a way to securely store and spend their funds. This is a massive challenge. Novi is an emerging product—almost like a startup—in a big company, and building it is an ambitious goal.
I believe in our mission and, while this project is indeed ambitious, I am optimistic that we’ll be able to achieve our goals in part because of the team we’re building in Tel Aviv. Facebook team members are people who want to learn, evolve, deliver a good product, and make a difference—all without ego. We have an open office that encourages creativity. Because of this, the culture here is nothing short of empowering. I heard a lot about the environment before I joined, but experiencing this kind of collaboration first-hand at such a large company was a huge surprise for me. In reality, Facebook is the biggest startup in the world.” —Ori M., Engineering Director, Novi
Post updated on May 28, 2020 to reflect that Calibra is now called Novi. Read more here.

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