SAS has launched a fintech incubator space in London, giving startups free access to big data technology assets and industry expertise, with a promise to slash the time taken to hone and test applications by up to 50%.
SAS says many fintech startups embark on pilot projects using open-source software for proof-of-concepts to save money, which in turn creates a need to rebuild the application to support scalable growth in a commercial environment.
“While technology is rapidly transforming the financial services industry, many businesses in this sector are focusing on compliance rather than innovation,” says Vincent Kilcoyne, fintech innovation lead at SAS UK & Ireland. “As such, the majority of technology development is happening outside established banks and inside fintech start-up companies, leading to a growing need to validate the viability of these offerings for maximum success rate.”
To mitigate against this, the incubator will provide startups with access to data science expertise and rapid prototyping environments for testing innovations without up-front financial outlay, he adds.
For all the evident largesse, startups who take this path will be expected to enter into a revenue-share arrangement with SAS on commercial application.
For Daryl Bowden, CEO and Founder, Glia Ecosystems, a fintech start-up for financial intermediaries and investors, the ability to play around with $5 million worth of proven SAS software assets offered a clear advantage.
"I was planning to undertake all my analytical development work using open source tools - largely for cost reasons," he says. "We had a number of very open and constructive investigation meetings that really opened my eyes to a different way of working. I was pleasantly surprised by the depth of analytical functionality that was available to Glia Ecosystems almost ‘out of the box’. I could immediately see how using SAS would slash my development effort and timescales, enabling me to get to market in a much shorter timeframe.”