ABN Amro enlists startup liaison to talk to entrepreneurs

ABN Amro enlists startup liaison to talk to entrepreneurs

ABN Amro has moved to improve the way it serves startups by appointing a liaison from outside the bank to work with firms at a new Google-backed tech quarters in Amsterdam.

The new centre, run by Google with tech site The Next Web, acts as a co-working space for startups where they can share talent, tools and training.

ABN Amro is onboard as a founding partner and will offer the young tech firms financial advice, help and services.

To do this, the bank has created a new role, start-up liaison, and is deliberately hiring from outside the bank, seeking someone with experience in both the corporate and startup world.

The liaison will act as a single point of contact, addressing start-ups' financial questions, problems and frustrations, working to fix them through traditional banking channels, ad-hoc add-ons, or entirely new products and services.

The move comes after ABN Amro found that at its own startup space normal relationship managers "didn't speak the startup language".

"There was too much of a gap between traditional banking and the fast-paced, innovative start-up world. So this time, we hired someone who can offer a fresh new perspective, sit at the table, and be a true collaborative partner for startups," says innovation manager Jasper Verbeek.

Meanwhile, the bank says that it will benefit from working with the startups and Google as it seeks out new technology and to change its culture for the digital age.

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