DBS and A*STAR’s I2R in Joint Lab Partnership

Zafar Anjum

DBS ASTAR

(from left) Mr David Gledhill, DBS Head of Group Technology & Operations; Mr Piyush Gupta, DBS CEO;  Mr Lim Chuan Poh, Chairman, A*STAR; Dr Lee Shiang Long, Executive Director, I²R, A*STAR; and Dr Tan Geok Leng, Executive Director, SERC, A*STAR.

DBS Bank has become the first bank in Asia to leverage research expertise of Singapore's premier research institute A*STAR's Institute for Infocomm Research (I2R) to develop new financial solutions.

The two organisations are setting up a Joint Lab to develop new and innovative products and services.

This partnership is part of an ongoing journey by DBS to shape the future of banking, the Singapore bank said in a statement.

According to the bank's sources, the three-year partnership will enable DBS to tap into the vast network of more than 600 researchers and engineers at I²R, for their knowledge base and research expertise in information, communication and media.

This relationship is a first of its kind between I²R and a bank in Asia.

The joint lab aims to develop commercial and executable solutions and products in the financial sector, conducting new research and leveraging existing IP in data analytics, mobile technology, social platforms and other leading edge technologies, the sources said.

I2R has extensive research capabilities in new analytic methods and processes and the institute's Data Analytics department has also achieved success at international competitions, including winning the 2013 GE Flight Quest competition, where the team developed a flight prediction algorithm for flight arrival estimates that were nearly 40% better than the current industry standards.

DBS has rolled out a number of trailblazing initiatives since 2010 and the Joint Lab is one of the latest. Earlier this year, DBS announced an agreement with IBM to tap into Watson's capabilities to harness Big Data to deliver a better customer experience.

"As we enhance and amplify our innovation efforts, strategic partnerships and alliances, such as this collaboration with A*STAR that brings together top talent from both institutions aligned in our objectives in shaping the future, are integral to achieving success," said David Gledhill, DBS Head of Technology and Operations.

 "A combination of banking, transaction and location data is transforming the way people bank. Many banks offer mobile banking services through mobile apps supported by advanced analytics," said Dr Lee Shiang Long, Executive Director for I2R. "Banks with the best internet banking (IB) platforms in Asia will have an enterprise perspective of customer data and will be able to acquire real-time analytics to provide a seamless banking experience for their customers. The DBS-I2R lab will focus on innovation and impact by tapping into mobile analytics through location based data (LBD) to better engage DBS customers in real-time and provide value added services."

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