Tom Coombs, Product Manager in Tokyo, Japan
Tom Coombs

Product Manager in Tokyo, Japan

Member since June 12, 2019
Tom has 20 years of experience across finance/fintech, travel, people ops, and telecoms, in company sizes ranging from seed stage through to Xerox and Goldman Sachs. He co-founded and built a US fintech lending company where he led product and has also built consulting businesses and served clients across Europe, the US, and Japan. He has deep expertise in UX and a strong sense for design, having worked in design agencies and led designers.
Tom is now available for hire

Project Highlights




  • Technical Product Manager

    2021 - 2022
    Pocketmade (Agency Clients) via Toptal
    • Managed strategy for the new implementation of a CDP (Blueshift), including journey definition and data modeling.
    • Handled product management for the martech stack, which ran from ad platforms to Salesforce.
    • Managed the build of a new site and blog in React with a Contentful (headless CMS) back end.
    • Managed the delivery of the new corporate website.
    • Managed the consumer E-comm sites running A/B testing optimization, and product strategy, among other responsibilities.
  • Data Analytics and Visualization

    2020 - 2020
    Tokyo Dev
    • Performed data analytics using Python, Pandas (analysis), Matplotlib, and Seaborn (visualization).
    • Designed and built the data visualizations in D3.js. See
    • Supported deployment and maintenance activities for the site.
  • Co-founder | Head of Product

    2011 - 2020
    • Built a lending (loan origination) platform from scratch, acting as Product Manager and handling the roadmap and backlog.
    • Established the design process and user research/engagement protocol.
    • Implemented the data warehousing and business intelligence capability (using Redshift/Panoply/Tableau).
    • Hired and led the design, product, and data teams. Oversaw engineering.
    • Built the company from scratch, including processes, business toolkits, and more.
    • Handled pitching and communication with existing investors and the board.
    • Created data visualizations for data ranging from operations to financial modeling.
    • Managed third parties, external stakeholders, service providers, and software integrations with data/process partners.
    • Created digital marketing campaigns, including setting up the infrastructure with automated ad generation, landing pages, and JavaScript event tracking.
    • Originated and evaluated new product concepts to serve existing customers/partners.
  • Founder | Lead Consultant

    2004 - 2015
    Man Woman and Child Ltd
    • Created digital strategies for clients ranging from seed-stage startups to government departments.
    • Planned and led user research engagements on three continents.
    • Created designs for websites and native mobile apps.
    • Worked as an embedded consultant, leading teams, and as an international outpost for agencies' foreign clients.
    • Managed processes from early-stage strategy through to development and QA cycles.
  • Digital and Brand Strategist

    2005 - 2008
    Moving Brands
    • Led the Information architecture for the Nokia website, which launched in 55 countries.
    • Led the brand strategy research and online information architecture for Swisscom (the Swiss national Telco).
    • Led user research, digital strategy, and information architecture for numerous clients (Nokia, Swisscom, etc.) across Europe and the US.
  • UX Designer/Information Architect

    2004 - 2006
    • Designed customer service center admin portal for this online travel/leisure company.
    • Conducted lab-based user research on a variety of products/features.
    • Designed and worked closely with the engineering team on design for new hotel booking system.
    • Researched and designed UX for hotels and lodgings products.
  • Analyst/Programmer

    1997 - 2001
    Goldman Sachs
    • Developed software for internal proprietary systems (trade booking and equity research).
    • Performed database architecture and optimization for a high-volume trade settlement system.
    • Conducted user research with the equities trading desk and back-office settlement team users.

Project History

  • LendStreet Loan Origination System
    Led the strategy, design, and build of LendStreet's proprietary loan origination system.

    As Co-founder and Head of Product, I played numerous roles in building the company and the loan origination system.

    • Led the product to create a loan underwriting and origination system from the ground up.
    • Created strategies for handling data from multiple sources for underwriting decisions.
    • Handled requirements for regulatory compliance, e.g., the Truth in Lending Act and the US state-by-state legislation requirements.
    • Created workflow processes and sourced tools for design and product management functions.
    • Built a product management automation tool akin to a front-end testing tool (using Selenium and Ruby).

  • Zuman People Ops Employee Mobile App
    Led the design of an employee app for Zuman's clients' employees.

    Zuman is a people operations outsourcing company supporting mid-sized companies with their people operations functions. Their mission is to supply a high-end level of service. The apps needed to honor that.

    I led a team of UX and visual designers to deliver the design for this iOS/Android app from scratch. The product had to handle several interactions involving high data density. We created some innovative solutions to address these.

  • Data Reporting Platform
    Designed and built a data ingestion and reporting platform.

    The platform used a suite of tools (Python, Selenium, SQL, RedShift, Google Sheets, and Tableau) to extract data from various source APIs and websites, then deliver via data pathways to RedShift. The final dashboard presentation of data to the lending operations team was done in Tableau and Google Sheets and delivered in Slack.

  • Sales Acquisition Funnel for Senior Healthcare Direct (US Health Insurance)
    Led the product development of an acquisition funnel, including CDP and Salesforce integrations.

    Managed the roadmap and feature development for the acquisition funnel, encompassing paid media, WordPress and React landing pages, lead scoring, and Salesforce CRM integration. Handled the strategy for the implementation of the Blueshift CDP.

  • eCommerce Platform for Ayr (US)
    Managed the eCommerce platform retailing across multiple US states.

    Ayr retails across multiple states under multiple consumer-facing brands. I worked on extending the common eCommerce platform, including implementing A/B testing, embedded user feedback, delivery trials, and mobile offerings.

  • Hotel Booking System
    Headed the product for the renewal of a hotel booking platform for Opodo, a European travel aggregator.

    Opodo launched its hotel aggregation product across all its European sites. As a product manager for the relaunch project, I addressed the overall build and specific resolutions for critical challenges. It included resolving UX issues derived from heterogeneous listing content and handling the complexity surrounding the amendment to single products in discount bundle bookings.


  • Master's Degree in Ergonomics
    2002 - 2003
    Loughborough University - United Kingdom
  • Bachelor's Degree in Human Sciences
    1993 - 1996
    University of Oxford - UK

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