Deutsche Bank heads for the clouds with Google

Darren Sinden

In moving to a cloud-based architecture Deutsche Bank, one of the world’s largest FX dealers, will gain access to global data centres and managed environments that are specifically designed to host applications

One of Europes largest banks has partnered with Google Cloud to develop the next generation of Financial Services. German financial institution Deutsche Bank, one of the world’s largest FX dealers by market share, has joined forces with the cloud services division of the US tech giant. The multi-year deal is intended to speed up and smooth out Deutsche Bank’s transition to becoming a cloud-based enterprise.

With the expectation that this will accelerate bringing products to market, whilst helping to reduce costs, in areas such as new lending products, retail banking interfaces, and deliver enhancements to existing Deutsche bank platforms, such as Autobahn, the banks on line FX execution and liquidity management tool.

The intention is for Google and Deutsche Bank to co-innovate under the arrangements and to develop new products and services together using Google’s advanced data analytics and AI capabilities that Deutsche hopes will allow it to make artificially intelligent recommendations to clients, and offer them services and products that meet changing needs and requirements in real-time.

Bernd Leukert, Deutsche Bank’s Chief Technology, Data and Innovation Officer said that the deal “marked a new chapter for Deutsche Bank,”  and that “With Google Cloud by our side, we have a strategic partner that will accelerate our technology transformation, enable us to use data more intelligently and provide a flexible and safe environment for us to quickly deliver new products and services.”

Rob Enslin, President, Google Cloud added that “Our partnership with Deutsche Bank will bring new innovations to life and further establish the financial services industry as an early technology adopter. Deutsche Bank is a trailblazer in the industry, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to partner with such an important market leader”

In moving to a cloud-based architecture Deutsche Bank will gain access to global data centres and managed environments that are specifically designed to host applications, whilst maintaining the security of customer data and it can do this for known costs which often get cheaper with scale.

What hasn’t been made clear is whose intellectual property any of the co-developed technology and products will be and whether Google is testing the water for its own financial services ambitions, if it has any? Or is just acting as a facilitator and technology partner to Deutsche Bank.

European Banks are desperate to reduce their costs and streamline their businesses, one of Deutsche Bank’s European rivals Societe Generale announced yesterday that it would merge two subsidiaries and close 600 branches across France.

Moves which it hoped would deliver savings of €350 to €450 million per annum. However, those savings whilst substantial were offset somewhat by the costs of the closures and merger which have been forecast to run to €700 to €800 million,

US tech giants have largely stayed out of the financial services markets, limiting their activities to payments solutions such as Apple and Google pay but their peers in Asia haven’t shown the same restraint with Alibaba owned Ant Financial and Tencent’s Wechat pay carving out substantial and highly profitable businesses for themselves.

How much longer can Silicon Valley resist becoming directly involved itself I wonder?

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