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Tim Nguyen: Keeping MeridianLink in Growth Mode

Tim Nguyen’s win last year of a Business Journal award got a shoutout on Wall Street.

“Our co-founder, chief strategy officer, and a partner in the business that I respect and admire greatly, Tim Nguyen, received the 2021 Innovator of the Year Award from the Orange County Business Journal,” MeridianLink Inc. (NYSE: MLNK) Chief Executive Nicolaas Vlok told analysts on the company’s third-quarter call last year.

“He’s an initial inspiration and drives spark in this company, and we are pleased that his continuing innovation and business acumen received well deserved recognition. Congratulations, Tim,” Vlok added.

Nguyen wasn’t available to discuss the past year because a spokeswoman said the bank software company is in a “quiet period,” where executives don’t speak publicly a few weeks before earnings to avoid revealing too much information.

Those second-quarter results are scheduled to be released this week. Analysts expect 2022 revenue to grow around 8.8% to $291.2 million and another 9.5% in 2023.

Those gains would follow a 34% jump in 2021, when revenue of $267.7 million exceeded expectations.

When the company went public 13 months ago, the stock soared higher than $28 each and hovered around a $2 billion market cap. Like most other tech stocks, it’s down this year about 17% to $17.83 and a $1.4 billion market cap as of last week.

Recent updates for the firm include an acquisition in April of StreetShares, which provides digital small business lending technology to banks and credit unions.

In June, MeridianLink hired as Chief Financial Officer Sean Blitchok, who’s worked as a top executive at firms like Salesforce.com.


UCI Background

Nguyen was born in Vietnam and lived in a refugee camp for six years in the 1980s before eventually landing in Huntington Beach where his great-aunt sponsored his family.

After he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in information and computer science from the University of California, Irvine in 1998, he co-founded MeridanLink, which provides software to credit unions and small banks so that they can compete with larger financial entities.

The company now has more than 1,900 customers and 664 U.S.-based employees, up from 582 a year ago.

Nguyen knows he’s been living the American dream.

“I’m very blessed and fortunate to have met a lot of good people that have helped me along the way,” he told the Business Journal last year.

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Peter J. Brennan
Peter J. Brennan
Peter J. Brennan has been a journalist for 40 years. He spent a decade in Latin America covering wars, narcotic traffickers, earthquakes, and business. His resume includes 15 years at Bloomberg News where his headlines and articles sometimes moved the market caps of companies he covered by hundreds of millions of dollars. His articles have been published worldwide, including the New York Times and the Washington Post; he's appeared on CNN, CBC, BBC, and Bloomberg TV. He was awarded a Kiplinger Fellowship at The Ohio State University.

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