This week in BFS: Fintechs team up with cloud providers for automating critical processes & nurturing a quantum computing-ready workforce

Latest Industry Insights from Draup Braindesk

The increasing consumer shift towards digital banking services to perform many of their day-to-day financial tasks is expected to drive the market.  

  • Microsoft collaborated with Conferma to implement a virtual credit card payments solution. Microsoft uses a single-use Virtual Card Payment for each transaction, sets spending controls, and captures vital travel data for reconciliation all through one clear, streamlined process.
  • To meet the bank’s goals, Cognizant delivered an AI-enabled Fraud detection solution needed to identify fraudulent checks in real-time, as well as reduce the number of checks requiring manual review. 
  • JPMorgan Chase partnered with fintech start-up Marqeta to launch digital-only credit cards to work in mobile wallets.

Fintech players are collaborating and investing to deliver mobile banking solutions to stay competitive in the financial services industry.  

  • Amazon partnered with Kotak Mahindra Bank allowing Kotak Mahindra Bank customers to shop on from the Kotak mobile banking app using any payment mode.
  • Up Romania introduced PayByFace technology enabling its customers to make payments utilizing cutting-edge facial recognition technology. 
  • PeasyPay launched a biometric payment system, NTT facial recognition payments trialed on self-driving buses.  

Banking companies are acquiring external capabilities via partnerships to use advanced technologies to deliver Wearable Banking and Robo Advisor solutions.  

  • Barclays partnered with Munich-based start-up Scalable Capital to develop a new robo-advisor service, called ‘Barclays Plan & Invest’.  
  • The Commercial Bank of Qatar launched a new digital feature that enables payment through wearables, a new payment method provided through smartwatches and trackers.  
  • Blockchain Startup Bloom Partners With TransUnion To Offer Credit Monitoring.  

BFS sector is trying to reimagine the in-branch customer experience by digitalizing the branch premises, reducing human-based interaction, and automating transactional workloads.  

  • Citibank uses digital policy boards in their branches to make their customers aware of the new policies and changes in the bank and the economy. 
  • HSBC Wealth Dashboard gives the customer a unified overview of their entire holdings with HSBC, and unprecedented control over their wealth all packaged into a streamlined interface. 
  • Agricultural Bank of China has launched a loan application on the blockchain platform for farmland used as collateral to secure the loan. 

Latest Reports Published in Draup

Visa Account Intelligence Report: Visa uses digital technologies such as AI, ML, RPA, and Blockchain to make banking operations seamless and secure. Read More>>
Citigroup Account Intelligence Report: Citigroup aims at making customer transactions fast, simple, and secure using mobile apps and online portals. Read More>>

Key Funding Alert

Teen banking startup Step takes In USD 100 Mn In Series C funding 
Step bills itself as a service geared toward teens and families, a notion borne out by the fact that 88 percent of the platform’s users say this is their first bank account. Users get access to a free, FDIC-backed bank account, a spending card, and a P2P payments platform to send and receive money instantly. Read more>>

Startup Spotlight

Company – Bitwala  
HQ Location – Berlin Area, Germany 
Total Funding – USD 37.62 Mn
Year of Inspection – 2015
About: Bitwala offers a banking experience that combines fully protected bank accounts with access to cryptocurrencies, digital assets, and blockchain-based finance. Read more>>

Key Insights and Signals in Banking & Financial Services 

EQ Bank’s new Mortgage Marketplace revolutionizes mortgage shopping with a smarter, digital-first approach
In partnership with nesto, a digital mortgage brokerage, the easy-to-use platform, and innovative algorithm analyzes the entire mortgage landscape in seconds. Customers will be given the best rates available and will be shown the best mortgage option for them, whether that’s an Equitable Bank mortgage, or one from another lender. Read More>>
Gemini and Mastercard partner on new crypto credit card    
Gemini, a cryptocurrency platform, has announced a partnership with Mastercard to offer a crypto rewards credit card. Unlike the BlockFi Bitcoin Rewards Credit Card, the first crypto-based rewards card, the Gemini Credit Card won’t charge an annual fee. Read More>>
DBS, JP Morgan, Temasek create JV for blockchain interbank payments platform      
The open platform will enable banks around the world to provide real-time cross-border multi-currency payments, trade finance, foreign exchange and DVP securities settlements on a world-class platform, with programmability, immutability, traceability built into its suite of services. Read More>>
Ally partners with Microsoft Azure to prepare a quantum computing-ready workforce     
US fintech Ally Financial will collaborate with Microsoft on Azure Quantum solutions to develop quantum computing skills and explore how new algorithms and future quantum hardware could improve customer experience. Read More>>
Mergers and Acquistions
DBS in advanced talk with Citibank to acquire Citi’s consumer banking business in India  
Citi has recently announced plans to exit consumer banking operations in 13 markets including India.  Talks with DBS Bank are at an advanced stage and they are keen to take up the entire consumer banking operation. Read More>>
Executive Movement
Shared branch banking venture OneBanks hires Lloyds executive as first CTO 
Andy Willmot brings over 25 years’ financial technology experience to OneBanks, joining from Lloyds Banking Group, where he was responsible for developing the architecture and engineering of the UK bank’s mobile and web digital platforms. Read More>>
Mercia Geises takes over as CEO of Standard Bank Group 
Mercia Geises joined Standard Bank in 2016 and was previously Chief Executive Officer of Old Mutual Investment Group where she worked for 12 years. Read More>>
Equifax names new CTO for Canada to accelerate technology transformation  
Richard Oh has spent over 25 years in innovation, entrepreneurship, and enterprise solution delivery, and was most recently a founder of Highdegree, LLC.  Read More>>
UBS names Mike Dargan chief digital and information officer 
Dargan has been Head Group Technology since he joined UBS in 2016. Before that, he was CIO for CIB at Standard Chartered Bank, Head Corporate Strategy & M&A, EMEA, and PacRim for Merrill Lynch and Head CIB, Asia-Pacific for Oliver Wyman. Read More>>
Deal and Deal Renewal
Revolut selects Equifax as US data and analytics partner     
Equifax provides several flexible, innovative solutions, including the new InnovationX immersive experience, to support the needs of rapidly expanding biotech companies like Revolut. With Equifax, Revolut can quickly improve its service and decision-making outcomes with a richer context in the U.S. market. Read More>>
NICE real-time authentication selected by VPBank to safeguard omnichannel customer interactions and improve experiences        
NICE announced that Vietnam Prosperity Joint-Stock Commercial Bank has selected NICE Real-Time Authentication (RTA) to enhance call security, prevent fraud and improve customer experiences. Read More>>
Mr. Cooper secures deal with Google Cloud for mortgage servicing platform    
Nonbank servicer Mr. Cooper Group has teamed up with Google Cloud to create a digital mortgage servicing platform designed to automate its loan documentation process.  Read More>>
Center setup and Expansion
Banco Santander launches G Store, the Mexican model of an online store tailored to entrepreneurs and SMEs    
Each of the G Store online stores will be designed by a professional team and includes all the processes to fully enter e-commerce.  Read More>>
BNP Paribas applies to set up a securities firm in China  
The application was published on the website of the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) on Tuesday, without any information on the shareholding structure. Read More>>
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