Top 28 Fintech and Insurtech Innovation Labs in Singaporeby Fintechnews Singapore November 16, 2018
Singapore, which has set out to become one of the leading fintech hubs in the world, has witnessed the establishment of dozens of innovations labs in recent years as banks and foreign tech firms are looking to capitalize on the city state’s large pool of IT specialists, established financial center and supportive government to build the next generation of financial services.
An innovation lab is a facility launched with the ultimate goal to create new revenue streams or bolster existing ones by improving productivity or speed, there is much more to consider. Innovation labs engages diverse participant, on a long-term basis, in open collaboration for the purpose of creating, elaborating, and prototyping radical solutions to pre-identified systemic challenges.
The following list compiles 28 of the most notable fintech and insurtech innovation labs in Singapore:
PayPal Innovation Lab
Launched in 2016, the PayPal Innovation Lab in Singapore is a one-stop melting pot for startups, developers, students and innovators providing various programs for projects and companies of all stages. The lab aims to foster innovation, research and development, entrepreneurship, talent and expertise in Singapore by collaborating with government agencies, industry associations and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Mastercard Innovation Showcase
The Mastercard Innovation Showcase in Singapore hosts numerous fintech innovations developed by various Mastercard Labs around the world, including many that were built in Singapore. It is one of the firm’s several Innovation Showcases located in major global cities including Sydney, Dubai, New York, St. Louis and London. One example of a made-in-Singapore innovation includes the conceptualization and execution of a digital payment platform within humanoid robot, Pepper.
Visa Innovation Center
Visa launched the Visa Innovation Center in 2016 as its first innovation lab in Asia Pacific. The slightly over 7,000 square feet facility in Singapore was established as a destination for clients, merchants and partners to collaborate, design and prototype new digital payment experiences together with the growing global community of fintech developers across the region.
Citi Innovation Lab
The Citi Innovation Lab in Singapore, which comprises a Client Experience Center and a Client Collaboration Center, uses new web, mobile, supply chain and analytics technologies to engage Citi’s institutional clients more innovatively and to create the most effective solutions and products for them. In the Innovation Lab, Citi demonstrates its latest transaction banking solutions and clients can “test drive” them through live demonstrations with situation analysis and discussions with GTS’ product experts. This is the first Innovation Lab that Citi has created in Asia Pacific, with another two in San Francisco and Dublin.
DBS Asia X (or DAX)
DBS Asia X (or DAX) is a space where DBS collaborate with startups and the broader fintech community to reimagine, inspire and create the future of innovation. Located at the Sandcrawler Building in Fusionopolis, DAX is at the heart of Singapore’s startup ecosystem. It is also home to HotSpot, DBS’s pre-accelerator program.
BNP Paribas Design Factory Asia
BNP Paribas Design Factory Asia was set up in June 2017 to create a space where all business lines within BNP Paribas can co-create. At the lab, scrum teams formed by individuals from across the bank work together to solve client problems and address business needs. The teams are guided by agile methodologies and design thinking principles, working with the startup ecosystem and corporate solution providers to bring these solutions to life.
Australia and New Zealand-based banking group ANZ launched its ANZ BlueSpace innovation lab in 2016 to accelerate innovation in institutional banking and facilitate collaboration with the fintech ecosystem. ANZ BlueSpace provides an open lab environment that aims to encourage design thinking and reduce the innovation cycle through the incubation and rapid prototyping of ideas.
Bank of China Innovation Lab Singapore
Bank of China’s newly launched innovation lab in Singapore showcases some of the latest technologies and innovations from the bank. Some of the current areas of focus include VR/AR banking, mobile banking, AI, blockchain, cloud, big data, and more.
BNY Mellon Singapore Innovation Center
The BNY Mellon Singapore Innovation Center focuses on creating data-driven market solutions through collaboration with fintechs and clients in Asia within BNY Mellon’s digital ecosystem, NEXEN. The lab aims to bring together leading-edge thinkers and emerging talent from across the industry to create, disrupt and accelerate market solutions, while tackling the demands and challenges of an increasingly complex market.
Deutsche Bank Innovation Lab Singapore
Like all of Deutsche Bank Innovation Labs, the newly launched lab in Singapore serve three key roles in the bank’s effort to bring real-world solutions to real-world problems: be Deutsche Bank’s eyes and ears into the innovation ecosystem, connect startups with Deutsche Bank, and act as a sandbox for ideas. The labs aim to design and build the digital bank of the future, exploring technologies such as AI, blockchain and automatic speech.
HSBC Singapore Innovation Lab
Launched in 2015, HSBC’s innovation lab in Singapore focuses on developing digital and mobile banking services tailored to clients in Asia Pacific. The lab works with clients, tech firms, academics and governments to develop new ideas and concepts, prototyping and trialing technology that will hopefully make it to market.
ING Labs aim to bring disruptive ideas to market by combining the bank’s knowledge and network with the knowledge and skills of others, including startups, scale-ups, researchers, entrepreneurs and other corporates. ING Labs in Amsterdam, Berlin, London, New York and Singapore focus on specific value spaces that best match the local expertise and ecosystems in these locations. The Singapore lab concentrates on tradetech and global trade, exploring advances such as the Internet of Things and distributed ledger technologies to enable greater efficiency within the supply chain and disrupt trading and trade financing as we know it.
EVOLVE – UBS Centre for Design Thinking and Innovation
UBS launched the EVOLVE – UBS Centre for Design Thinking and Innovation in Singapore in 2015, the first of its kind for the bank in Asia Pacific. The center focuses on creating new innovative and user-centric products. Other of UBS’s innovation labs are located in Zurich and London.
Standard Chartered eXellerator Lab
Launched in 2016, the eXellerator Lab in Singapore is part of SC Ventures, a business unit created in Standard Chartered Bank to promote innovation, invest in disruptive financial technology and explore alternative business models. The lab is located at the heart of Singapore’s financial district in the bank’s main office building at Marina Bay Financial Centre. It works closely with the business units within the bank and explores the use of emerging technologies and data science for sustainable business solutions.
The Open Vault at OCBC
The Open Vault at OCBC is the third innovation lab of OCBC Bank. Established in February 2016, the lab collaborates with external fintech firms to rapidly test and validate new ideas and solutions, before bringing winning prototypes quickly to the market. Its goal is to make banking simpler: more transparent, more instant and more rewarding for customers.
As MetLife’s pioneers for disruptive innovation, LumenLab is in charge of creating new businesses in health, wealth and retirement. The lab focuses on building new products and services grounded in technology and data to help people achieve richer and more fulfilling lives. The facility houses a working space and business incubator staffed with dedicated innovation experts, many of whom have a background in startups or come from outside the insurance industry.
AXA Digital Hive
A place to break boundaries, test, innovate, create and understand the possibilities and opportunities for the Singapore market, the Digital Hive is where AXA Singapore monitors and drives continuous improvement in all its digital offerings. The lab showcases AXA Singapore’s digital capabilities, and facilitates the sharing of ideas both internally within AXA and externally with the firm’s partners and stakeholders.
IAG Firemark Labs Singapore
Firemark Labs Singapore is an insurtech hub set up by Australian insurance firm IAG. The lab acts as an incubator for the company to work with Asian-based startups and technology providers to co-create new products and services targeted at Australia, New Zealand and Asia.
Solaria Labs in Singapore was launched by Liberty Mutual Insurance to build and test experimental new products based on customer-centric research around emerging trends. The lab focuses on several trends including next-generation vehicles, connected life, and the sharing economy, and applies cutting-edge technologies such as blockchain and machine learning to enhance its products.
KPMG Digital Village
KPMG Digital Village was created to bring corporates, startups, investors, and government bodies together in a collaborative ecosystem to drive the adoption and integration of innovative solutions. Within the Digital Village, KPMG offers a portfolio of services which support the different needs of corporates to overcome these challenges. The Digital Village focuses on fintech, healthtech and logistics.
Accenture Digital Hub Singapore
The Accenture Digital Hub in Singapore focuses on helping brands and enterprises around the region invent, co-create and apply disruptive solutions to transform their businesses in today’s digital economy. The Digital Hub combines capabilities across Accenture Digital, including interactive marketing, analytics and mobility, to provide an extensive range of creative, business and technology power under one roof.
EY wavespace Singapore
EY wavespace in Singapore focuses on the disruptive technologies of intelligent automation, including artificial intelligence, machine learning, blockchain and robotic process automation, among other digital capabilities. The center seeks to combine EY insights in these cutting-edge technologies with deep industry domain knowledge and market experience to help companies innovate and transform their businesses for growth opportunities in the Asia-Pacific region.
Capgemini Applied Innovation Exchange
Launched in 2017, Capgemini’s Applied Innovation Exchange (AIE) innovation lab in Singapore aims to deliver a robust service catalogue, within an ecosystem of the firm’s other AIEs, with a focus in areas such as data analytics, visualization, artificial intelligence and cognitive computing. These AIEs are designed to enable enterprises to discover relevant innovations and to contextualize and experiment with them within their specific industry.
IBM Studio Singapore
The IBM Studio in Singapore is a design center which aims to help clients reinvent their business for the digital age. The lab provides a unique, highly collaborative space where clients and IBM teams can co-create with their users in new ways. It is home to resident creative designers, strategists, data scientists and technologists, collaboratively working to conceive, rapidly develop, and test user-centric digital innovation.
Microsoft Technology Centre
The Microsoft Technology Centre (MTC) in Singapore is a place for collaborative workshops for Microsoft customers, where they can engage with MTC staff in briefings, sessions, and other technical courses. The Singapore MTC features include an interactive zone, two development suites, an executive briefing center, an envisioning center, a consumer experience space, a server display wall, a device wall, and a partner solutions wall.
Oracle Digital Hub
Aimed at helping SMEs with the cloud solutions and resources they need for innovation and growth, the Oracle Digital Hub in Singapore houses Oracle’s digital sales team and focuses on helping mid-size organizations transition to the cloud efficiently. Abuzz with the creative energy of a start-up, the team will provide timely, personalized and effective support to customers, using the latest collaboration tools, techniques and technologies to transform the buying experience.
Refinitiv Labs, formerly Thomson Reuters Labs, was the first Thomson Reuters Labs to open in Asia. The innovation facility aims to collaborate with customers, tech startups, universities and the Singapore government to roll out products and solutions for professional markets in Asia Pacific. The lab also supports proofs-of-concept in the areas of third party risk, open platforms, data fusion, blockchain and legal analytics.
Digital IT consulting firm and tech services provider Synechron launched its Financial Innovation Lab (FinLab) in Singapore in October. The lab aims to help the firm build its offering in the Asia Pacific region and partner with clients on interactive workshops related to key digital strategies, such as AI, blockchain, data analytics and regtech.
Featured image credit: EY wavespace Singapore