Commitment to innovation key to differentiation and growth of digital banks amid stiff competition

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Senior executives and heads of digital banks across Asia Pacific discussed how innovation across service offerings and embracing a culture of transformation is key to growth and profitability, amid heightened competition.

With more challengers entering markets, digital banks can differentiate themselves with the technologies brought in and how efficient data is used to enhance stickiness of products.

Kevin Lam, head of TMRW and Group Digital Banking of UOB; Bryan Carroll, CEO of TNEX; Gunneet Singh Bally, senior vice president and group head of retail channels of Security Bank Corporation; Voranuch Dejakaisaya, executive chairman of Kasikorn Business Technology Group (KBTG); and Nick Wilde, managing director in Asia Pacific at Thought Machine discussed the profitability of a digital-only business and how cloud-native technology stack help banks and financial institutions (FIs) build the operating models of unique experiences.

Carroll said the main competitive advantage of digital banking is the ability to sum up all customer interactions, and the opportunities for value propositions. Bally discussed the increase in products and services offered due to “commoditised personalisation.” Lam talked about the need for close partnership and collaboration in the industry. Voranuch explained the process of innovating into the new digital core banking to support the digital requirements of today’s marketplace. Wilde said all banks are digitising but the differentiator is innovation data-centricity, and how banks utilise data using technology.

Key discussion points:

  • Personalisation is important to sustain profitability of digital banks, as it creates better insights to customer preference.
  • Digital banks are at a disadvantage when it comes to balance sheet and funding.
  • Forging close partnerships and collaboration within the ecosystem through understanding each other’s culture.
  • Banks can leverage partnerships in the ecosystems
  • Focusing more on mortgages and home loan systems
  • Bank needs commitment to innovation to sustain profitability


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