When Hank Uberoi said goodbye to a long and lucrative career on Wall Street in 2004, he could have retired to a life of investing in ventures he loved and tending his 20,000-bottle wine collection. Instead, he's working late nights and winging from continent to continent in a bid to transform one of the most vital functions in the world economy: the movement of money from one country to another. 

Uberoi, 54, former head of Goldman Sachs's global technology systems, admits his quest is half-crazy, Bloomberg Markets magazine will report in its May issue. For almost four decades, the crossborder payments system has been controlled by SWIFT, shorthand for the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, a nonprofit cooperative of 10,800 banks. 

Uberoi is the CEO and top individual stockholder of Earthport, a London-based company that's built a cloud-based alternative payments network. It recorded only $11 million in sales—and zero profit—in its last fiscal year. And yet Uberoi is betting that his tiny enterprise can rewire a machine that circulates about $21 trillion annually to every corner of the globe. 

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