Creating new value in financial services

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FINEX Folio — By J. Albert Gamboa-125


SINGAPORE — A new era has dawned on the financial services industry. With continued acceleration of the Digital Age, the industry needs to find a new growth model since the predictable path to success has been narrowing.

The creation of this new value is the focus of the 2018 Asian Financial Services Congress (AFSC) at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre here in Marina Bay Sands. Drawing industry leaders from across the continent, AFSC is organized annually by the International Data Corporation (IDC), a wholly owned subsidiary of the world’s largest data and marketing services group known as IDG.

IDC’s global research approach and rigorous methodologies for technology suppliers and IT buyers enables the premier data provider of market intelligence to cover all continents. With more than 1,000 analysts in 50 countries, its comprehensive coverage promotes understanding of multiple industries through a “glocal” model on the ground in various markets.

In the run-up to 2018, the IDC Financial Insights team of experts worked on the areas of open banking, financial technology trust, and cross-industry cooperation. The themes of platform-building, connectedness, and collaboration defined the team’s agenda in reflecting how the financial services industry has laid the foundations for a new era of explosive growth.

Topics discussed during the two-day conference ranged from the role of banks in the cashless payments ecosystem, data monetization, and intelligent automation, to the measurement of cloud success and management of cyber threats in a hyperconnected world, as well as digital transformation in the insurance industry and the rise of invisible banking.


Speakers at the plenary sessions and masterclass tracks included Alan Lim of IBM’s Blockchain Garage; Dionne Ang of Dell EMC; Alessandro Petroni of Red Hat; Amran bin Hassan of Maybank; Georgette Tan of Mastercard; Axel Grosse Axway Asia Pacific; Benito Mable of Tokio Marine Asia; Colin Dinn of Siam Commercial Bank; Demetris Booth of Cisco Security; and Deepak Ramanathan of SAS.

Among the experts from IDC Asia Pacific who shared their financial insights were Cyrus Daruwala, Michael Araneta, Anuj Agrawal, Cathy Huang, Daniel Zoe-Jimenez, Avinav Trigunait, Arpita Mitra, and Gerald Wang. They believe the financial services industry will be able to capture new opportunities in a flourishing culture of innovation through strategic alliances, partnerships with the best-of-breed fintechs, and regulators’ encouragement of disruptive services.

Participants realized it is now possible for banks, insurers, and capital market firms to create value never before seen and rarely imagined in their traditional businesses. It helped them connect the dots between the trends of today’s digital ecosystems and their organizational road maps for creating new value.

Highlighting the 2018 AFSC is the Financial Insights Innovation Awards, the winners of which will be announced at the closing ceremony tonight. This would provide a definitive review of innovation best practices in banking and insurance, while helping decode the sources, drivers, and implications of new value for the financial services industry.


J. Albert Gamboa is CFO of the Asian Center for Legal Excellence and Chairman of the FINEX Media Affairs Committee’s Golden Jubilee Book Project.