HBA '71, MBA '72, LLD '10
Chairman & CEO, ZenBanx
Arkadi Kuhlmann was the Chairman and CEO of ING DIRECT, the largest direct bank in North America until 2012.
Since founding ING Direct Canada in 1997, and replicating the success 3 years later with ING DIRECT USA, Arkadi democratized banking and brought quality financial services directly to "Main Street" Americans. Today, ING DIRECT USA has changed the banking experience for 7.6 million customers and is entrusted with $77 billion of the customers' wealth.
A business pioneer, thought leader and educator, Arkadi taught at McGill University, University of Western Ontario, and was a professor of International Finance and Investment Banking at the American Graduate School of International Management (Thunderbird) in Phoenix, Arizona. He is the author of The Seeker's Way: First Steps in the Learning Process for Students, The AVCAN File: First Steps in Understanding Financial Statements, International Dimensions of Canadian Banking, Prime Cash: First Steps in Treasury Cash Management and co-author of The Orange Code: How ING DIRECT Succeeded by Being a Rebel with a Cause. Arkadi has also written numerous business cases, including a collection in Purchasing and Materials Management by England and Leenders, and has published several papers in The Canadian Bankers & ICB Review. His thoughts on leadership and innovation have been cited in recent publications such as Mavericks at Work: Why the Most Original Minds in Business Win, The Catalyst: How You Can Become an Extraordinary Growth Leader and Rethink: A Business Manifesto for Cutting Costs and Boosting Innovation.
Prior to leading ING DIRECT, Arkadi has served as President of North American Trust, President and CEO of Deak International Incorporated, and has held management positions at the Royal Bank of Canada. Arkadi currently serves as Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Ivey Business School, Chairman of the board of ING DIRECT USA and ING Direct Canada. He is a member of ING Group Leadership Council, ING Banking Management Team, ING Direct Council, ING Direct N.V.
Supervisory Board and Global Management Team, ING Americans Advisory Board and ING Foundation Board. Arkadi has served on the Federal Reserve's Thrift Institutions Advisory Council (TIAC) Board from 2006 to 2007, and is a charter member of American Savings Education Council, member of National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD), member of the Financial Services Roundtable and previous member of Canadian Club and the Empire Club of Canada.
In 2007, Arkadi was honoured with the Ivey Distinguished Service Award by the Ivey Business School for his life-time dedications to the school. He has received other recognitions including the Netherlands American Foundation's Ambassador C. Howard Wilkins Jr.
Award in 2009, Delaware Business Leader Award in 2008 and 2006, Habitat for Humanity Leadership Award in 2007, American Banker's Innovator of the Year in 2006, ING Business Award - Revenue Growth Category in 2005, and is the honorary commander of National Guard 512 Airlift Wing.