Big tech company Oracle is to locate a new 'Fintech Innovation Programme' in Belgium, teaming up with local startup supporter B-Hive.
Oracle says it plans to dedicate additional European staff and resources to create "mutually monetizable relationships" with fintechs and digital banking innovators.
The group says the set up in Brussels provides a convenient location for European financial institutions and nearby access to the European Commission. The move is a blow to the UK, which in pre-Brexit days would have been the stand-out location for such an initiative.
Johan Van Overtveldt, Belgium’s minister of finance, welcomed the move: "I expect this relationship to create real momentum in the acceleration of financial innovation in Belgium and Europe. It further strengthens Brussels as a pan-European hub for fintech and thus contributes to our strategy to focus on attracting niche financial activities, such as fintech, insurance and market infrastructures.”
For B-Hive, the relationship extends support of the local fintech ecosystem beyond reliance on big bank partners.
“Adding big tech firms to our ecosystem is an important part of our strategy to grow and expand innovation for our start-ups, scale-ups and financial service partners,” says Fabian Vandenreydt, executive chairman, B-Hive Europe. “As our strategic cloud infrastructure collaborator, we welcome Oracle’s expertise to help our start-up and scale-up community reach higher levels of enterprise readiness, security and scalability. And this will benefit our bank, insurance and market infrastructure partners in the short term.”