Our Team | PaySauce

Our Team

The chefs who make our awesome sauce

Shelley Ruha
Independent Director, Chair

Shelley joined the PaySauce board in February 2022, and brings a wealth of governance experience within fintech, large scale technology infrastructure, payments innovation, banking, wealth management, and venture capital including directorships with JB Were, The Icehouse and BNZ Agricapital.

Current governance roles include Chair of Tax Gift and NZ Rural Land Management, and directorships at Heartland Bank, Hobson Wealth and Partners Life.

She has also had an extensive executive career leading large, complex businesses in New Zealand, with revenues over $1bn and 1,200 employees; and in disciplines including Technology, Operations, Product, Property and Procurement.

Asantha Wijeyeratne
Executive Director & CEO

Asantha Wijeyeratne has over 20 years’ experience of unparalleled focus on helping small businesses navigate the difficult landscape of effective payroll. His formal background in accounting combined with his ‘people first’ attitude, has seen him successfully build a number of businesses into market leadership positions.

Most notably Asantha was the driving force behind the creation and growth of SmartPayroll/ SmartBooks which he grew to service close to 10,000 SME’s in NZ before his exit in December 2013.

Asantha’s obsession is the small business sector with a tech/customer service focus. He loves seeing someone turn an idea with determination and passion into a business that supports them, their families and the wider community and gets a lot of enjoyment from making tech work to help business owners rather than hinder them.

In recognition of his contribution to business and the community, he was awarded a Queens Service Medal (QSM) in the New Year’s honours list in 2013 and is a finalist in Ernst & Young’s 2021 Entrepreneur of the Year.

Gavin Thompson

Gavin is a founder and a director of Catalyst IT, New Zealand’s largest open-source IT service provider. His background is in software development and delivery, and he has over 30 years’ experience in software systems in the manufacturing, engineering, financial, and government sectors. Gavin is also a director on the board of Catalyst Cloud, a company which grew from an infrastructure platform for the Catalyst business, into a provider of cloud services for Aotearoa.

Gavin is passionate about open source and open standards software and systems which allow a collaborative and effective approach to delivering secure, resilient and innovative solutions.

Mike "MOD" O'Donnell
Independent Director

Mike “MOD” O’Donnell is a professional director, writer and advisor with a background in fintech, ecommerce, tourism and news media.

MOD is chair of New Zealand’s largest craft brewery Garage Project and deputy chair of global online music company Serato. He’s also a director of KiwiWealth, Radio New Zealand, Tourism New Zealand, G2G Knowhow, www.realestate.co.nz and The New Zealand Hi-Tech Trust.

MOD is an independent weekly business columnist for Stuff Media and the host of TVNZ series “Start Me Up”. He was previously Chief Operating Officer of Trade Me, Chief Operating Officer of vWork and head of wholesale investment at Gareth Morgan Investments.

Mark Samlal
Independent Director

Mark Samlal has over 25 years' experience in growth leadership roles in Asia Pacific. Most recently Mark co-founded PayAsia in 2006 where he was Non-Executive Chairman, until being appointed as Executive Chairman and Managing Director of PayAsia in 2015. In 2017, Mark was appointed to the Board and as Managing Director of PayGroup which listed on the ASX in May 2018. During this time, Mark strategically executed over five acquisitions before being acquired by Deel Inc by way of scheme of arrangement in November 2022 and delisted. Mark remains the CEO and Founder PayGroup. Mark was also a Director and General Manager of PayConnect Solutions that was acquired by ADP. His previous senior roles include CEO at Vicplas International Ltd, a Singapore Stock Exchange listed company, as well as Executive Director of Omni Industries in Singapore. Throughout all experience mentioned, Mark was an invested shareholder.

Jim Sybertsma
Independent Director, Audit & Risk Committee Chair

Jim has over 25 years of experience in financial leadership positions including CFO roles for DB Group, NZ Dairy Foods, Fliway Group, and Hawkesby Management. During this time, Jim has been involved in audit, compliance and corporate finance activities across a range of industries and sizes from start-up to scale-up.

Jim is currently a Director for Provident Insurance Corporation Limited, Auto Drive Holdings and First Glass. He is also CFO of Hawkesby Management, a family office investment role managing multiple investments in early stage tech companies and listed equity portfolios.

Asantha Wijeyeratne
CEO / Co-founder

With a background in accounting and payroll, Asantha earned his stripes at SmartPayroll, which he built up to over 10,000 customers. In 2015, he co-founded PaySauce with a drive to bring small businesses the freedom of 21st-century technology. By putting the customer first, Asantha aims to bring awesome change to people at work.

Troy Tarrant
CTO / Co-founder

Troy has over 20 years experience in IT development, product design and architecture, ten of those years focused solely on HR and payroll applications. He's worked on projects across the board, from small business to government. He's built PaySauce to enable rapid development, security and scale.

Mat Stokes

As a lifelong learner and student of successful organisations, Mat believes in the maxim that ‘culture eats strategy for breakfast’. As a leader, Mat's biggest priority is building and nurturing culture. His track record ranges from managing integrations with major international corporates to building innovative startups.

Jaime Monaghan

Jaime has a powerhouse background in leadership and finance, with a former role as Head of Insurance at Trade Me and eight years in KiwiBank’s Finance team. She brings incisive commercial acumen to our financial and strategic planning.

Jessica McLean

Jess is a people person through and through with a career that started with hands-on customer service and payroll consulting, then moved into people & culture. She's now leading people experience at PaySauce, making sure we have the right talent and the best people and product strategies to propel PaySauce forward. She's a bit of a payroll geek, and despite moving out of payroll into HR she's still obsessed with getting payroll right for both employees and employers. She's passionate about creating high-trust, growth-supporting cultures and enabling high-performing teams to do what they do best, and not just inside PaySauce - she helps PaySauce clients and partners succeed with their people experience strategies too.

Want to join our team?

Careers at PaySauce