DBS Bank today announced the launch of a global hackathon that has attracted over 1,000 participants across 25 markets including Brazil, Germany and the US. Called Paradigm Shift, the hackathon focuses on building a customer-centric approach to developing new cutting-edge services for today’s digitally-savvy customers.
Banks continue to face stiff competition from non-financial companies and must reinvent and disrupt themselves in order to stay relevant, said Soh Siew Choo, Managing Director and Head of Consumer Banking and Big Data Analytics Technology, DBS Bank. “This requires us to have a fundamental shift in the way we think and operate, so as to build a superior user experience for our customers.”
DBS is looking to attract submissions from the world’s best and brightest technology talents, including developers, data scientists, behavioural scientists, UX/UI designers, fresh grads to PhD students, and entrepreneurs. Through the hackathon, DBS is looking to find teams with creative concepts that will make banking effortless, so customers can focus more on the things that matter to them. The best performing teams could land a job at DBS, and teams with the most impressive solutions will stand a chance to win cash and prizes. The total prize purse is USD 100,000, one of the highest in the world.
The DBS Paradigm Shift global hackathon will take place from 28 May to 22 September, and is supported by partners such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Capgemini, Microsoft, QuantumBlack and Telstra. Over 17 weeks, the teams will take their inspiration to a concept to a working prototype. The hackathon will focus on the use of technologies such as machine learning, IoT, AR/VR, to build a better customer experiences. Teams will be judged on the novelty of their concepts, relevance and impact.
Phase 1 - Ideate (28 May - 5 July)
Interested participants will need to register themselves as individuals, and form teams of up to four. They will be given consumer trend themes to guide them through their ideation. They will also have access to a panel of over 50 experts from DBS and its partners across key areas of specialisation such as big data, artificial intelligence, mixed reality, banking, sustainability and consumer trends.
Phase 2 - Code your way to the finals (13 July - 6 September)
Teams with the most original and impactful concepts will be shortlisted. Over the next eight weeks, they will be given access to technology platforms to develop their concepts into prototypes.
Phase 3 - The final sprint (21 - 22 September)
Selected teams will compete in the finals through a virtual pitch session. Team that meet the judging criteria will have a chance of winning cash prizes from a combined prize pool of USD 100,000.
In recent years, DBS has upped the ante and launched strategic technology initiatives to weave banking into the everyday life of its customers. This includes launching the world’s largest banking API platform that has enabled DBS to partner with government agencies, fintechs, startups and its SME customers; POSB Smart Buddy, the world’s first in-school wearable tech savings and payments programme; and digibank, a mobile-only bank available in India and Indonesia. Last year, DBS was recognised by Euromoney as the World’s Best Digital Bank, and Global Bank of the Year by The Banker and Global Finance.
Appendix - Partner quotes
“Being at the forefront of innovation, Capgemini is proud to be DBS’ trusted growth partner in this very exciting Initiative. Through sharing of domain expertise, mentorship and our global outreach in this journey, we look forward to forging closer collaboration with DBS.” - Saumitra Srivastava, Head of Financial Services, Capgemini Singapore
“The financial services technology landscape is an ecosystem of innovative players, and we are excited by the opportunity provided through the DBS Paradigm Shift global hackathon to inspire next-gen fintech solutions built on the Microsoft platform,” said Kevin Wo, Managing Director, Microsoft Singapore. “Beyond building their best code on Azure, participants will also be provided with an end-to-end collaboration experience through Microsoft Teams. By empowering them with the best of Microsoft’s intelligent cloud and collaboration tools, there is really no limit to what they can achieve and we look forward to the innovations from the hackathon.”
“Digitisation offers banks the opportunity to redefine how they engage with their customers and realise new growth drivers. For example, advanced analytics could drive much higher levels of productivity and customer personalisation. We are excited to be collaborating with DBS to explore the next frontier in digital banking.” - Wojtek Krok, Partner, McKinsey & Company (QuantumBlack is a McKinsey company)
“As one of the programme’s core partners, Telstra worked alongside the DBS team to co-create a digital workspace platform leveraging Microsoft Office 365 automation and workflow components, that encourages collaboration in a much more efficient and streamlined manner. It has been an incredibly exciting and rewarding program to be involved with, and we wish the participants all the best as they showcase their ideas”. - Sam Bednall, Business Development Executive - Enterprise Services, Telstra
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