30 Isabela. Courtesy of Jackie Bezek.

Last week, the financial service startup Affirm confirmed it would be basing its Pittsburgh operations at the 30 Isabella Street building on the North Side.

The good news for job-hunters: The company says the office will be home to 100 employees by the end of 2019, and the workforce will grow to 500 over the next several years.

“It was important for us to be able to grow our workforce for many years to come with superb talent,” said Max Levchin, CEO and co-founder of Affirm. “We look forward to building a true center of excellence for our merchant partners and their customers, as well as providing career growth opportunities for our newest employees.”

Levchin is an eminence in the world of financial technology, or Fintech, having helped found Paypal in 1998. Affirm provides small, personal loans via their online platform. The loan period can last from 3-39 months, and according to the company website, there are no hidden fees or compounding interest rates. The service is meant to provide consumers with an alternative to the long-term debt that often comes with traditional credit cards, especially for young consumers.

Levchin and his partners have already garnered considerable interest and investment in Affirm. At the end of 2017, the financial services company was valued at $1.8 billion.

The company is leasing the space from the Allegheny Health Network, which until 2017 was the main tenant of 30 Isabella. The hospital network now has most of its corporate staff consolidated in one Downtown Pittsburgh office, so they’ve put the 30 Isabela location up for sublease.

Speaking to NEXTpittsburgh, 30 Isabella realtor Jackie Bezek said the agreement took shape quickly after the company first visited Pittsburgh as a potential site in mid-2018. The firm officially announced their intention to build a local office in October.

While the city has a growing collection of financial tech startups, most have a small staff of only a few dozen full-time employees.

“We are thrilled that Affirm has chosen Pittsburgh for its newest office location and the new jobs the company will create,” said Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto. “Pittsburgh is leading a new model of urban growth and development that is innovative, inclusive and sustainable and it’s great to see another leading technology startup taking advantage of it.”

Bill O'Toole

Bill O'Toole was a full-time reporter for NEXTpittsburgh until October, 2019. He previously reported in Myanmar.