Standard Chartered brings eXellerator innovation lab to Hong Kong
Standard Chartered has opened its Hong Kong innovation lab, the eXellerator, to promote innovation within the bank and to tap emerging fintech in the region.
The eXellerator in Hong Kong will be part of the bank’s global network of labs and activities responsible for exploring new tech.
As reported in January, Standard Chartered established a new business unit, SC Ventures, to invest in fintechs and other start-ups. SC Ventures will work across the group in three key areas. The eXellerator innovation lab will be part of all this.
The latest eXellerator, located in Kwun Tong, with an area of over 10,000 square feet, is a space for business units, clients, tech firms and partners to solve problems and explore opportunities.
The lab, designed and created by co-working space company WeWork, has an open common area, project and training rooms, and a usability testing lab.
Mary Huen, CEO at Standard Chartered Hong Kong, says: “As clients become more digital and expect more seamless, timely and user-friendly access to banking services, we need to constantly innovate and improve, or risk being left behind.”
Dr Michael Gorriz, group chief information officer at Standard Chartered, adds: “The word ‘eXellerator’ stems from two words: acceleration in change and excellence in client service. With the eXellerator now in Hong Kong, all the ideas which will be created in our largest market in the world, will obviously benefit the clients here, and elsewhere in the world.”
According to the bank, it has plans to develop solutions in a few key areas, including data science, artificial intelligence (AI), cybersecurity and “banking make easy”.
Standard Chartered Hong Kong has also partnered with the University of Hong Kong to provide a six-hour certificate programme to 1,000 Hong Kong staff.
The bank says this is Asia’s “first fintech-focused massive open online course” and will help its employees in areas such as payments, finance, data and regtech.
Standard Chartered launched its first eXellerator in Singapore in 2016. The bank is also a founding sponsor of SuperCharger Hong Kong, a fintech accelerator, since 2015.
According to Standard Chartered, its alumni network of 26 firms has cumulatively raised over $370 million and closed 16 commercial partnership deals as a direct result of the programme.