Our Team

Mansour Karimzadeh, CEO of the Secure Payments Academy

Mansour Aaron Karimzadeh applies nearly 25 years of experience to his leadership role. His background includes payment and transaction processing systems in the financial industry. He has been instrumental in implementing many large card and payment processing projects worldwide specializing in smart cards, EMV, NFC, digital payments, online fraud, digital currency, tokenization, 3DS etc.  – including projects in the UK, Canada, USA, Latin America, Middle East and Australia. 

He served as a Board member of Global Platform and Chair of its Marketing Center. He previously managed a smart card consultancy and software company that was acquired by ACI Worldwide. At ACI he served as VP of Operations and Director of Smart Cards Unit. He was elected to the EMV Migration Forum (US Payments Forum) Steering Committee. He also chairs its Communications and Educations Working Committee and member of its Debit, Mobile, Transit Committees.

Mansour has been providing payments training based on his experiences from the field working with acquirers, issuers, merchants and payment technology vendors around the world for the past 10 years. He runs the training entity www.securepaymentsacademy.com providing training internationally.  The Secure Payments Academy™  (SPA) provides payments training workshops for all new dynamic security training based on the EMV technology and other advanced payments technologies, that cover the latest trends and best practices in global payments. SPA’s expertise and knowledge is generated through its consulting business practice under www.scil.us. This unique knowledge base is applied throughout each workshop or training session.

Mike Vaselenak, CEO of VCS Technologies Inc.

Mike Vaselenak ( https://www.linkedin.com/in/michaelvaselenak/ ) is a specialist in payments systems product strategies, with over three decades of experience.

Mike has defined payments product strategies and specified software and services under those strategies for leading corporations including top tier banks, merchants, card networks, loyalty programs, crown corporations, telcos, credit unions, and governments.

Mike has developed in depth research analyses on payments topics including tokenization and ISO20022. Mike co-chaired industry forums on prepaid cards, and multi-application card issuance. Mike has lead Canadian Institute sessions on new payments technologies, prepaid, gift, and stored value cards, and payments compliance. Mike has also presented at multiple conferences including Payments Canada Summit, Canadian Institute, Cartes North America, and ACT Cardware.

Christie Christelis, President of Technology Strategies International Inc.


Christie is the founder and president of Technology Strategies International Inc., a Canadian technology market research and strategy firm. He is Canada’s leading payments industry analyst and has been tracking developments in the Canadian payments industry for more than twenty-five years. He has been engaged on consulting assignments on EMV implementation, virtual currencies, mobile payments and wallets, P2P payments, debit payments, smart cards, payments and loyalty programs, simulating payments markets, and benchmarking machine learning algorithms for e-commerce ID. Christie has conducted payments market studies on Canada, the USA, Europe, Tunisia and South Africa. 

He has designed and delivered in-depth technology and regulatory training programs to fixed and mobile operators, broadcasters, regulators, training institutes and government ministries from more than 20 countries around the world, under the auspices of the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organization. The 5-day intensive training programs included: convergence technologies and regulation; economic regulation; price cap regulation; interconnection principles, costing and regulation; and number portability, carrier selection and local loop unbundling, among others. 

Christie has also designed and delivered action learning programs for banking and payments executives from South Africa, with programs aimed at benchmarking global best practices and learning from the world's top companies in the US, Canada, Brazil, France, Czech Republic, Hong Kong, Mexico and the UK. 

Christie currently lectures in Project Management and Business Analysis in Sheridan College’s Faculty for Continuing and Professional Studies and is actively involved in program development for the college. He has delivered presentations on the adoption of advanced payments technologies at payments conferences in Canada, USA, UK, Australia and South Africa.

Back to the top