We live in a world where new ideas and devices hit the market every day, where information and data are exploding, and where speed and agility are the norm. For financial services companies to stay relevant in such a rapidly changing environment, innovation is a top priority. FinTechs have been creating offerings in every line of business across the financial services spectrum. Therefore, companies need to embrace FinTechs and cultivate a FinTech mentality to secure their future in the midst of digital disruption.
Nomura, Asia’s global investment bank, has already begun its journey in this direction through the ‘Voyager - Nomura FinTech Partnership’ programme. The programme aimed at harnessing Nomura’s internal domain expertise and complementing the agility and technological capabilities of start-ups. PwC India was a strategic partner to the programme and has been working with Nomura to foster FinTech innovation.
As the first step, we held over 180 innovation workshops across three months to identify innovative ideas. The workshops involved executives from each of Nomura’s divisions developing innovative ideas, and understanding emerging technologies and their application in their area of business. They culminated with the identification of specific technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), pattern recognition, data visualisation, natural language processing (NLP)/natural language generation (NLG), information discovery, anomaly detection, and chatbots, and the development of use cases even before the FinTechs came in. Fascinated by the possibilities of FinTech, Nomura’s senior management was committed towards driving the programme.
The programme attracted 150+ applications across 10 countries in spite of capital markets and investment banking occupying a niche space in the FinTech industry. The enthusiasm across all of Nomura’s divisions was palpable, and we facilitated the involvement of executives from each division to identify the right partners from this vast pool of applications.
The start-ups showcased a wide range of banking solutions, including client on-boarding, business intelligence and market insights, enhanced risk and control, and human resource management. By closely interacting with the start-ups, Nomura executives quickly understood their propositions and underlying technology, and recognised their orientation with the use cases.
Eight start-ups were finally shortlisted and aligned with Nomura’s strategy and ambitions. These start-ups worked closely with Nomura’s teams and leveraged their domain expertise to co-create highly promising solutions that address a number of banking industry pain points. The programme succeeded in fostering a culture of innovation at Nomura.
Given how deeply PwC’s FinTech practice is embedded in the FinTech ecosystem, we could help Nomura identify the right programme for transformation and smoothly execute the programme.
On demo day, which was held on 15 November 2017, the selected start-ups showcased their solution to Nomura executives and clients, as well as representatives from the FinTech community.
If you are interested in finding out more about PwC’s FinTech practice, please reach out to me.