13 September, 2018
Scotia bets on digital factories for innovation

Scotiabank is investing USD 10million each year in digital transformation, including cloud technology, says Ignacio Deschamps, group head for international banking

By Eyanir Chinea


Scotiabank wants 50% of product sales and 70% of client interactions to be done digitally by 2021. To reach that goal, it’s investing in digital factories in five countries to develop new digital solutions, Ignacio Deschamps, the group head for international banking and digital transformation, says.

The factories in Canada, Colombia, Mexico, Peru and Chile bring together digital experts to build solutions that, although designed for the local market, can also be replicated internationally.

“The digital banking business is a pillar of our strategy to drive growth,” Deschamps said on Wednesday at a keynote speech at Finnosummit, a fintech conference for banks, startups and investors in Mexico City.

“This is the future of our business,” he said, adding that the bank forecasts 20% growth in sales through digital channels this year.

Deschamps highlighted that Scotiabank invests CAD 13 million (USD 10million) each year in digital transformation, including cloud storage. Innovation advances are beginning to reduce operational costs for the institution. Artificial intelligence solutions, such as chatbots, and fewer physical processes, such as moving cash between branches and clients, are leading that change.


Fintech collaboration

Scotiabank has 20 partnerships with fintech companies in Latin America, Deschamps said. The bank views such alliances between banks and the financial technology industry as complementary.

“Our strategic alliances include venture capital, fintech, startups, accelerators, incubators, universities, as well as traditional technology partners,” he said.

The bank’s main goal is collaboration, he said, although investments form part of the strategy.

He highlighted deals with three private equity companies as key to that: US-based fintech investor QED, Canada-based Georgia partners, which specializes in North American startups, and Viola Ventures in Israel which focuses on cybersecurity.

The bank has also launched partnerships with startups like Konfío through investments, he said. The Mexican platform uses data to make quick lending decisions for small businesses, using Scotiabank funds.

Read also: Santander’s pace of digital onboarding in LatAm shows signs of slowing

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