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Industry roundup: 6 January

HSBC and Silent Eight announce multi-year partnership to fight financial crime

Technology company Silent Eight has announced a multi-year partnership with HSBC that will support the bank in enhancing its industry-leading compliance operations. The bank sought a financial crime partner that could successfully improve its manual processes and existing statistical models to decrease risk while simultaneously increasing efficiency.

Silent Eight Alert Resolution investigates, and resolves cases in the same way an analyst would; with greater speed, precision and consistency. Following a successful trial period, the solution is set to be integrated into HSBC’s existing infrastructure to provide case adjudications that are explained and auditable.

"Given the growth in alert volumes, and unpredictable spikes driven by global volatility, we saw an opportunity with Silent Eight that would give us the ability to close alerts quickly and accurately," said Matt Brown, group head of Compliance Services at HSBC.

"HSBC's dedication to this project is just one aspect of their tireless commitment to improvement, and to helping drive AI innovation across the industry," added Martin Markiewicz, CEO and co-founder of Silent Eight. "We're proud to partner with them on their mission to make the world safer."


UAE-based bank partners with Visa on virtual card solutions for corporates

First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) has partnered with Visa to launch a suite of digital payment solutions for corporate clients. The launch unveiled a Central Travel Account solution, designed to make it easier for companies to centrally manage travel payments by consolidating and matching key travel data with transactional financial data. This should help corporates in tracking and managing their travel spends and enable them to produce detailed reports highlighting savings.

FAB also unveiled the first Visa Virtual Corporate Cards in the UAE, supported via Visa’s Payables Automation (VPA) solution, to address payment challenges in business-to-business (B2B) payments.

Offered as part of FAB’s ongoing commitment to meet the evolving needs of each customer segment, VPA is designed to deliver transaction processing and remittance posting of virtual card payments to suppliers. It benefits businesses by saving time, reducing labour costs, improving cash flow, and providing better security against fraud. The VPA solution has features that make it an effective alternative payment method, such as configurable authorisation controls, single use accounts and a flexible technology integration approach.

“The Visa Central Travel Account and Virtual Corporate Cards are both fast-growing and widely accepted digital forms of payment for B2B transactions," said Shahebaz Khan, General Manager for the UAE at Visa. "These solutions provide an increased layer of security and visibility and help to lower the costs of doing business by providing easy reconciliations and worldwide acceptance. We are excited to partner with FAB to bring these pioneering solutions to the bank’s corporate clients."  


Deutsche Bank facilitates margin trading and securities borrowing transaction in China

On 29 December, Deutsche Bank China facilitated a margin trading and securities borrowing transaction under the new measures for the administration of domestic securities and futures investments by Qualified Foreign Institutional Investors and RMB Qualified Foreign Institutional Investors (the new rules).

Following the announcement of the new rules by China Securities Regulatory Commission on 1 November 2020, China Securities Depository and Clearing Corporation officially opened the application and registration channel for margin securities accounts on 28 December.

Deutsche Bank China supported a qualified foreign investor as its China onshore custodian bank with a full suite of custody services including account opening, asset custody, cash transfer and regulatory reporting, and helped in completing a transaction on the first trading day of margin trading and securities borrowing under the new rules.

“The opening of margin trading and securities borrowing through the QFII/RQFII scheme expands the investment product scope and increases the diversification of investment strategies available to foreign investors," commented Tony Chao, head of Securities Services Greater China and head of Securities Services Sales in North Asia at Deutsche Bank. "It also helps in improving fund efficiency, providing investors with greater flexibility to investment strategies and portfolio execution.”


BI Norwegian Business School launches Master of Science in Sustainable Finance

BI has launched an interdisciplinary Master of Science programme in Sustainable Finance to equip students with skills to incorporate environmental, social and governance (ESG) risk and opportunities into financial decision making and investment practice.

Over the past few years, sustainability has become a core concern for investors and corporate managers and ESG factors play a key role to attract capital needed from investors to reach operational targets and comply with regulatory changes.

“ESG factors have become increasingly important for the entire financial industry and are rapidly becoming an integral part of the investment process," said Professor Bruno Gerard, associate dean of the programme at the Department of Finance at BI Norwegian Business School. "They  provide a broader understanding of companies and of the impact of their activities on key stakeholders beyond shareholders: employees, the local communities and the environment. This is key to nudge corporations towards sustainable and socially responsible operations. Students looking for a career in finance need knowledge about how ESG issues affect financial management and how financial constraints can limit or support corporate action towards sustainability." 

The master’s programme starts in the fall of 2021, and is designed to give students a broad understanding of the challenges, trends, and geopolitical aspects of social and environmental responsibility, climate change and global sustainable development. Combined with core courses in financial theories, corporate finance and governance, students will gain a deep understanding of conflict of interests, and of the ethical issues arising from balancing the interests of investors, employees, other stakeholders and society.

“By studying sustainable finance students will be able to meet the increasing need for expertise in both finance and sustainability," added Gerard. "There is high demand from all sectors of the economy for managerial talent with both strong management and financial skills, and a deep understanding of sustainability and social responsibility issues." 

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