Axis Bank, India’s third largest private sector bank today announced the launch of 'Thought Factory' an innovation lab facility aimed at accelerating the development of innovative technology solutions for the banking sector. With the launch of Thought Factory at Bangalore, Axis Bank has become the first bank in india to launch an innovation lab.
Commenting on the launch, Rajiv Anand, Executive Director (Retail Banking), Axis Bank said, “We are excited about the way financial industry is evolving and how millennials are reimagining the industry. Thought Factory, our innovation lab, is an endeavor to build on the ideas of innovators that can radically change consumers’ life in banking and beyond. With this initiative, we are creating a vibrant ecosystem of global banks, startups & tech innovators.”
Amit Sethi, CIO of Axis Bank said that the objective of this lab would be to constantly innovate and introduce breakthrough solutions for the banking sector and that it would help startups at various stages of growth.
An accelerator aimed at mature startups
The Thought Factory will house an accelerator to collaborate closely with the high-potential startup ecosystem. The lab will work closely with the startup community that are redefining banking in the digital era.
The bank is experimenting with emerging technologies such as blockchain, artificial intelligence, mobility, and cloud to bring about disruptions across functions including credits, deposits, wealth management, mobile payments, and security etc. With the accelerator, a dedicated three-month program, Axis Bank will engage with the startup community to fast-track the innovation journey. The bank will shortly launch an application for the first cohort of the “Axis Accelerator,” which is primarily aimed at the startups which are mature.
Incubator for early-stage startups
The bank will also be reaching out to startup hubs across India through roadshows for curating the best-fitting startups for the program. The short-listed startups will be taken through a structured mentorship program for fine-tuning, validating and scaling their business.
The bank will be running an accelerator program as a part of this lab. At the end of the three-month program, bank would organize an ‘Investor Day’ to facilitate funding for the short-listed startups. Axis Bank may also offer to invest in high-potential startups before the Investor Day. The bank is also working with NASSCOM 10k, tech partners, various VC partners, global banks and academia for creating a vibrant ecosystem which transcends beyond India.
‘Hack for Hire’ Program
Additionally, Axis Bank has also launched ‘Hack for Hire’ program for identifying talent from across the country through hackathons for the in-house innovation team at the Thought Factory. Another first in the industry, the bank is creating a competitive platform for FinTech professionals to resolve real-business challenges leveraging emerging technologies.
About Axis Bank
Axis Bank is the third-largest private sector bank in India. Axis Bank offers the entire spectrum of services to customer segments covering large and mid-corporates, SME, agriculture and retail businesses.
With its 2,904 domestic branches (including extension counters) and 12,743 ATMs across the country, as on 31 March 2016, the network of Axis Bank spreads across 1,855 cities and towns, enabling the Bank to reach out to a large cross-section of customers with an array of products and services. The bank also has nine overseas offices with branches at Singapore, Hong Kong, Dubai (at the DIFC), Shanghai and Colombo; representative offices at Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Dhaka and an overseas subsidiary at London, UK. The bank’s website offers comprehensive details about its products and services.