Standard Chartered has established a new business unit, SC Ventures, to lead digital innovation across the Group, invest in fintechs and other start-up companies, promote rapid testing and implementation of new business models.
SC Ventures will be led by Alex Manson, most recently Global Head of Transaction Banking, and will work with businesses and functions across the Group in three key areas:
- Catalysts: Internal consultants will help the rest of the Group in problem-solving and spreading innovation best practices and client-centric design. The eXellerator innovation lab will be part of this group.
- Investments: A professional investment unit to manage the Group’s minority investments in fintech companies and to seek further investments in promising technologies. The Bank has previously invested in Ripple, a leading distributed ledger company to co-develop commercially viable applications for global trade and payments and Paxata, a leading enterprise information management company.
- Ventures: The Venture unit will sponsor and oversee new disruptive technology ventures that are wholly or partially owned by Standard Chartered. It will seek projects that amplify the bank’s core strengths or where the bank can support a venture in a strategic way.
Alex will report to Michael Gorriz, Group Chief Information Officer, effective 1 March 2018 and will be based in Singapore.
Michael Gorriz Group Chief Information Officer of Standard Chartered said: “As new technology continues to play an ever more important role in banking, there is a huge opportunity for us to promote more innovation, and at the same time develop and deliver digital solutions that work for our clients and for us.”
Alex Manson, Global Head of SC Ventures, said: “In a world otherwise full of technical solutions looking for problems, at Standard Chartered we start with human beings. I feel privileged to have the opportunity to facilitate and catalyse a culture of innovation, working with our clients and colleagues to invent the banking of tomorrow.”
Under Alex Manson’s leadership, the bank has built a differentiated Transaction Banking business with a strong suite of market-leading products across trade, cash and securities services. He has also been responsible for the SC Innovate platform for employee-driven innovations and numerous proofs of concepts in collaboration with fintech companies, in areas such as Distributed Ledger Technology, data analytics and mobile platforms.
Technology is at the heart of Standard Chartered’s strategy - driving efficiencies, increasing automation, introducing global platforms, reducing manual errors and strengthening how it combats financial crime. In 2015, it announced it was investing about USD3 billion over three years in technology and systems.
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