James “Jimmy” Whatley

Chief Executive Officer

James Jimmy Whatley of Cane Bay Partners

James “Jimmy” Whatley graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a Bachelor of Science in business administration and remains a rabid Tar Heel to this day.

His career in the financial services industry began in 1997 when he was one of the first people hired at Advance America Cash Advance Centers, Inc. as head of operations. He was later named executive vice president and chief operating officer for that company. Whatley also worked for The Nottingham Company, a mutual fund administration company, as its COO. He held a similar position with insurance company Direct General before returning to the financial services industry where he also held executive roles. After a five-and-a-half-year stint at Check into Cash in Tennessee, Whatley then made the big move to work with Cane Bay Partners on St. Croix in 2020.

Whatley’s career includes almost 25 years of leadership in short-term lending and related fields. During that time, he’s helped numerous clients and customers to be successful. He brings this experience to the role of CEO at Cane Bay Partners, a leader in the fintech space.


Jimmy has a way of taking the stress out of difficult situations. He’s the most approachable CEO I’ve ever known.

Dylan Beal

VP of Risk & Analytics , Cane Bay Partners

I appreciate Jimmy’s vast industry experience and his ability to manage the complexity and totality of our services for our clients.  His approach is measured, professional, and innovative. And I haven’t found anyone yet that doesn’t like working with him.

Kirk Chewning

Partner & Co-Founder, Cane Bay Partners