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Industry roundup: 7 December

Deutsche Bank and Google Cloud sign cloud and innovation partnership

Deutsche Bank and Google Cloud have finalised a strategic, multi-year partnership to accelerate the bank’s transition to the cloud and co-innovate new products and services. The pair say it is the first partnership of this kind for the financial services industry.

For Deutsche Bank’s clients, the agreement will reshape how products and services are designed and delivered. With faster application development and the use of advanced artificial intelligence and data analytics tools, the bank will be able to respond more flexibly and accurately to the most pressing challenges, trends and client needs.

“Today marks a new chapter for Deutsche Bank,” said Bernd Leukert, Deutsche Bank’s chief technology, data and innovation officer and member of the Management Board. “With Google Cloud by our side, we have a strategic partner that will accelerate our technology transformation, enable us to use data more intelligently and provide a flexible and safe environment for us to quickly deliver new products and services. This is the blueprint for bringing together the relative strengths within banking and technology for the benefit of our clients.”

“Mobile self-service options, artificial intelligence-based recommendations, and other innovations are transforming the banking experience for businesses and consumers around the world,” said Rob Enslin, president of Google Cloud. “Our partnership with Deutsche Bank will bring new innovations to life and further establish the financial services industry as an early technology adopter.”

A number of use cases for the partnership are already being explored, including:

  • New lending products to support “pay-per-use” models as an alternative to purchasing assets outright (asset-as-a-service).
  • Establishing a unified, intuitive interface for retail customers in Germany to more easily view the range of Deutsche Bank and Postbank products.
  • Enhancing the bank’s Autobahn platform, the award-winning electronic service offering for corporate and institutional clients, to create more personalised recommendations and experiences

As a further step, Deutsche Bank and Google Cloud intend to selectively co-innovate with promising start-ups and fintechs that can support the bank’s client and transformation goals. In addition, to expand customer reach, Deutsche Bank plans to list its Google Cloud products on Google Cloud Marketplace, to drive broader adoption of the bank’s new cloud native services and solutions.


Sber AI forecasts businesses’ financial performance in an hour

Sberbank has adopted its proprietary machine learning (ML) models to predict the cash flows of customers of the bank’s Corporate Investment Business Unit. This should reduce the time to prepare a financial forecast for corporate clients when making a lending decision from one day to only 45 minutes. The bank says that the quality of AI/ML-assisted forecasts is "way higher than the quality a loan officer can deliver". 

Machine learning for cash flow models is being introduced step by step and only after thorough validation and piloting. AI-based financial models are already being applied in the trade segment, covering 30% of the bank's loan portfolio. It is piloting models in the food industry and crop production, and is set to develop and apply them in other industries as well.

In 2020, Sber also launched its Robot Lawyer, which evaluates the legal capacity of customers (JSCs, LLCs, and sole proprietors) automatically. The Robot Lawyer extracts more than 1,000 attributes from the general array of documents and analyses them with a quality ratio of 95%. This solution performs the legal due diligence of customers in only five hours instead of three working days, which a standard process would require. The robot took over routine operations, which allowed employees to concentrate on more complex tasks that require comprehensive assessment and analysis.


MAS awards licences to operate new digital banks in Singapore

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) announced four successful digital bank applicants. Two licences to operate a 'Digital Full Bank' (DFB) were awarded, to consortium comprising Grab Holding and Singapore Telecommunications, and an entity wholly-owned by Sea Ltd. Two licences for a 'Digital Wholesale Bank' (DWB) have also been awarded, to an entity wholly-owned by Ant Group, and a consortium comprising Greenland Financial Holdings, Linklogis Hong Kong, and Beijing Co-operative Equity Investment Fund Management.

MAS says that the successful applicants must meet all relevant prudential requirements and licensing pre-conditions before it grants them their respective banking licences. The monetary authority expects the new digital banks to commence operations from early 2022. 

“MAS applied a rigorous, merit-based process to select a strong slate of digital banks," said Ravi Menon, managing director of MAS. "We expect them to thrive alongside the incumbent banks and raise the industry’s bar in delivering quality financial services, particularly for currently underserved businesses and individuals. They will further strengthen Singapore’s financial sector for the digital economy of the future.”

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