HSBC taking data analysis service to business customers

HSBC is upping its search for artificial intelligence expertise as it takes a data analytics service to its business customers

HSBC is creating an artificial intelligence (AI) ecosystem to analyse data from its business customers, which will be used to tailor products.

The ecosystem, known as the Client Intelligence Utility (CIU), will extract insights from data gleaned from the activities of 1.6 million business customers. It will create more than 22,000 physical tables of data.

Before mining the data, HSBC plans to increase its access to AI expertise and complete the automation of certain processes.

“This scale of intelligence has never been built in HSBC,” said Chuck Teixeira, chief administrative officer and head of transformation at HSBC Global Banking and Markets. “We’re very keen to start mining the vast pool of data we have brought together, but first we need to build out our bench of AI talent and automate the remaining compliance management.”

This will require the bank working in an ecosystem. “Building this type of capability requires talent and expertise that is not only rare in the financial services industry, but rare across the globe,” added Texeira.

“Selecting a number of partners – from corporate firms to individual and academic talent – will allow HSBC to build a collaborative ecosystem that challenges partners to solve use cases with HSBC, using the CIU,” he said.

“We’re very keen to start mining the vast pool of data we have brought together, but first we need to build out our bench of AI talent and automate the remaining compliance management”
Chuck Teixeira, HSBC Global Banking and Markets

HSBC is already using analysis of the 10PB (petabytes) of data to improve financial crime compliance and achieve various operational efficiencies, and wants to extend the use of that information to offer services to customers.

“This CIU will deliver what we call our Client720 data asset, the bank’s first ever automated and digestible view of our clients’ activity across our products and the globe. It allows us to better serve our clients by managing their needs efficiently and rapidly over the range of systems and applications we operate,” said Teixeira.

CIU will help HSBC predict what products and services clients will need in the future and automate compliance across the 66 jurisdictions in which it operates.

The data analysis will provide HSBC business customers with information on how macroeconomic and geopolitical events will affect them, to help them take appropriate action.

Banks are stepping up their spending on AI to automate processes and improve services to business clients.

A report from financial services management consultancy Opimas said that in 2017 – discounting acquisitions of startups – finance firms in the investment sector spent $1.5bn on AI technologies, and predicted this would increase by 75% to $2.8bn in 2021.

While automation technology is being used to replace manual tasks in the back office, AI is being introduced at the front end to improve trading services.

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