John Steward


John Steward is a global P&L leader and Marketer in payments and related consumer / SMB financial services including cards, rewards, loyalty, travel, lending, and services. He has hands-on global operating experience leading businesses and country CEOs across 27 markets ranging from $15MM to $2B.

John is widely regarded for his record of driving innovation and organic growth,  his domain expertise in direct-to-consumer and SMB sales and distribution, and his extensive experience in digital, social, and relationship marketing.

Building on his successful 26-year career at American Express, John is currently a Senior Advisor to McKinsey, leveraging his expertise for clients  across the firm’s Financial Services and Marketing and Sales practices.

John left American Express in 2013 after serving in London as Executive Vice President of their $5B International Consumer and Small Business Services division.  In this capacity, John had dual roles:  P&L responsibility for the $2B Lending, Travel, and Insurance Businesses as well as functional responsibility for omni-channel marketing strategy, product, next generation payments, rewards, and all digital platforms across the entire  International business consisting of 22 markets in Europe, Asia, the Americas, and Australia/NZ.

In this role, John developed and delivered integrated growth and customer experience strategies that collectively drove a 40% increase in revenue and 2.4x increase in operating profits.   The business is now more customer focused, more premium, and has a more robust segment and revenue mix.  John also led a fundamental transformation of American Express’ international digital and social marketing capabilities, laying the foundation for yet further growth and amazing new customer experiences.

Previously, John held P&L responsibility for World Markets for American Express, a $1.2B Consumer and Small Business operation comprised of 15 markets across Europe, Asia and Latin America.  In that role, he created and executed on a unique portfolio strategy that nearly doubled profits through the teeth of the Financial Crisis, while simultaneously reducing the risk profile of the business.

John holds an MBA from the Wharton School, an MA in International Studies from University of Pennsylvania and a BA in Asian Studies from Northwestern University.   He speaks English, German, and Chinese.