Societe Generale is bidding to tap into London's booming fintech sector with the appointment of Anthony Woolley as head of innovation for the UK.
Wooley moved to SocGen London from HSBC in July 2010 as head of IT and utlimately CTO for the french bank's UK operations.
The formation of the innovation function within the UK is part of a concerted effort by the bank to create an international innovation network by building strong ties with fintech startups across the globe.
Says Woolley: "Collaboration between different stakeholders in the industry can be very beneficial for all parties. For example, innovative fintech firms can experience challenges gaining access to a sector that is complex and has high barriers to entry. Institutions that are able to provide that access in an agile way and leverage on their capabilities will be best placed to take a leading position in the industry in the coming years.”
In his new role, Woolley will report jointly to Philippe Robeyns, chief operating officer for Europe, Middle East & Africa and Aymeril Hoang, head of group innovation.
The switchover forms part of an international innovation ecosystem project that has seen the French bank build relationships with homegrown startups at la Plateau in France, alongside the creation of labs and accelerators in Africa, India, Germany and Amsterdam.
Hoang comments: “This newly created innovation function within the UK is an extension of the Group worldwide innovation platform and part of Societe Generale’s strategy of accelerating its digital transformation to be more agile in a changing environment and intensify its contacts with the fintech ecosystem."