Banking at the Crossroads

History tells us there are certain watershed moments. Banking is going through such a phase. After decades of building systems around products, the industry must now build technology around customers, and, in particular customer relationships. Also, the conversation with customers is changing from complex instruments to simpler products like value based checking. Banking is going…

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Living on the Edge of Exponential Change

Our future looks grim.  The economic situation is dire with little relief in sight. But short term gloom conceals deeper shifts in an ever-changing environment. The future may be much brighter than it seems. There have been many turning points throughout history when breakthroughs in technology brought about huge changes in society. From the spinning…

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Netflix and the Future of Banking

Banking moguls looking to extract more value from their businesses might take a leaf out of the media industry. Netflix is a huge media success. But it is far from unique. The media industry has long made more money through aggregating and distributing content than by creating it. Distributors provide scale and customer reach without…

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The Smartphone Wars

It’s been almost fifty years since Maxwell Smart, Agent 86, goof-balled the mobile phone into the popular imagination when he used his shoe for clandestine conversations. A lot has happened since then in the ‘smart’ phone world. Angry Birds and Plants vs. Zombies are now out on Windows Phone 7. Nokia has released the amazing…

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Next Generation Risk Management in the New Age of Structured Products

Even before the financial crisis, financial firms struggled to get their enterprise risk act together. Then as now, structured products added a whole new layer of complexity. The problem is how to get on top of the data. Without the right data, risk management, in today’s high frequency markets, is like driving a Ferrari at…

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Recreating the Ear of the Markets – Part I

Ever since Mr. Reuter replaced carrier pigeons with telegraphy, the history of markets has been a race to capture market sensitive information. But the challenge lies not just in gathering the data, but distilling it to what really counts. In the days of open outcry there was something called ‘the ear of the market’. Traders…

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Regulatory Transparency and Data Best Practices

New rules are being written, demanding greater reporting from financial institutions to their respective regulators, and more rigorous stress testing for systemic players. To satisfy both these constraints, banks will need to store more data (both real-time and historic) in a consumable and accessible format. In turn, technology strategies must be implemented to deliver these…


Decrypting Financial Reform: The Three Dimensions of Transparency

The word “data” is used and abused when it comes to Finance and IT – but with new regulations the need for transparency is bringing data strategies to the top of every organisation’s priority list. This series of blogs will examine the new demands, and give examples of how technology can help companies turn regulatory…


Mastering Innovation in a World of Complexity

A 1994 ground breaking paper on product development suggested that there were two kinds of product development – a traditional analytical one moving through  defined stages from the abstract to the specific as a problem solving process and another based on interpretive and continuous dialogue.[i] The analytical approach assumes we can work out what customers want,…

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