Cognitiv+ Join Accenture FinTech Innovation Lab London

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LONDON; Jan. 8, 2018 – RegTechs, start-ups offering technology solutions for financial firms’ regulatory challenges, will join Accenture sixth FinTech Innovation Lab London in their own dedicated stream for the first time.

During the three-month fintech accelerator programme, which runs Jan. 2 – Mar. 22, RegTechs and other fintech start-ups will be partnered with executives from banks and insurers to fine-tune and develop their technologies and business models.

Accenture launched the RegTech stream in response to an increased pool of start-ups offering solutions for compliance in a year in which the financial services industry faces unprecedented levels of regulation. Among the new regulations this year are the revised Payments Services Directive (PSD2), which requires banks to make customer data available to third parties, with the customer’s consent; the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR); and the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II), which went into effect last week – all before structural banking reforms, with ringfencing, are implemented in January 2019.

The 20 companies on this year’s shortlist of innovative startups come from the U.K., Israel, Croatia and South Korea, offering technology solutions for many pressing business issues, including:

  • aiding and automating compliance processes, using analytics and robotics;
  • detecting financial crime and fraud, using artificial intelligence;
  • helping insurers predict and price cyber risk;
  • ensuring the security of payments and digital identity through blockchain solutions; and
  • developing financial management platforms across connected devices.

“The risk of non-compliance is what keeps financial boards awake at night,” said Julian Skan, executive sponsor of Accenture Fintech Innovation Lab London. “As the drive for better customer experience and lower unit costs pushes data into the cloud, the price of getting things wrong has risen. It’s a pivotal moment for technology solutions to help banks and insurers not just to meet the needs of regulators, but make the most of the digital economy.

“Above all, financial firms know they need to improve their productivity, particularly in the UK economy, and innovations can be the lightbulb moment for banks and insurers to operate more effectively and deliver better results. This year’s cohorts have shown how start-ups are learning to focus on problems that can be solved and to understand what they need to learn from incumbents who are facing the challenges of meeting digital customer expectations with legacy infrastructure.”

More than 270 start-ups from 42 countries applied to this year’s program, with the shortlisted start-ups being mentored by the program’s biggest-ever cohort of financial services executives.

Partners come from over 32 financial institutions including: AIB, AXA, BAML, Citi, Credit Suisse, Direct Line, DNB, Ergo, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, Intesa Sanpaolo, JPMC, Legal and General, Lloyds Banking Group, LV=, Morgan Stanley, MS Amlin, Nationwide, Nordea, OP, Post Office Management Service, RBS, RSA, Santander, Societe Generale, Towergate, TSB, UBI, UBS, XL Catlin, Zurich.

Dan Zinkin, a managing director at JP Morgan Chase, said, “Financial firms have an important role in collaborating with start-ups to develop new technologies that can transform our industry. We must keep ahead of a rapidly changing world and keep striving to innovate for our customers and improving our services. I am thrilled to be a part of a program dedicated to bringing financial firms and entrepreneurs together to navigate the future of the industry.”

Learn more at

About FinTech Innovation Lab London
The FinTech Innovation Lab London is a mentorship programme for entrepreneurs in the financial services sector – particularly in the areas of big data; analytics and cognitive computing; security and identity management; risk management and compliance; digital marketing and social media; cloud; payments; blockchain technology; talent management; and Internet of Things applications.

Audit and Artificial Intelligence

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While auditing can hardly be coupled with the word ‘entertaining’, companies and regulators take audits very seriously.

Auditors nowadays face the challenge of reviewing thousands of documents, scrutinising hundreds of contracts, reviewing the implementation of regulatory changes and undertaking investigations on ambiguous transactions. While auditors spend considerable time flipping pages and opening individual digital files to review them, it is arguable that artificial intelligence could help on some of those tasks.

AI is definitely not the right vehicle for very complex analysis, but for those repetitive, semi-defined tasks, a well-tuned system will start counting items, spot patterns, and flag anomalies to a level that meets and exceeds the requirements of a corporate exercise.

Cognitive systems can emulate structured processes and pre-defined tasks that normally are undertaken manually, collect information from thousands of documents and structure them in a way that brings anomalies faster to light. Further audits have historically involved taking samples of populations. With the power of big data and analytics, the auditor can choose to analyse all items in certain populations, not just a sample of them.

“With big data and analytics, auditors can choose to analyse all items, instead of just a sample”

AI can read thousands of contracts and extract what the auditors are after without the need to read them. Systems can also analyse entire sets of expenses, read the entire text, categorise the expenses and potentially expose non-authorised claims.

Systems can identify indications of fraud, just by reviewing changes in patterns of invoices over time or unusual invoiced items, and quantities based on previous history. Auditors have some leads to identify mismanagement and save millions to their companies.

“AI introduces the idea of continuous auditing and proactive analysis”

In addition, AI introduces the idea of continuous auditing and proactive analysis. Investigations can be programmed on a regular basis and auditors will have the opportunity to focus to more advanced analysis. AI can apply risk indicators to large datasets to detect risks that would otherwise remain hidden.

For the audit professionals, this can be translated both as an opportunity or a threat. Association of Chartered Certified Accountants has predicted that over the next two years automation will simplify processes such as bookkeeping and transaction coding, enabling accountants to focus on advisory services and other higher-value work.

To achieve this, auditors need to enhance skills such us data management and machine learning, something that universities do not currently provide. It is those professionals that understand auditing methodologies along with technologies that will show us the road to automation.

It is an exciting path!

Contact us to see how we can help you!

This article has been first published in Digital Catapult Blog.

NOAH Berlin

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Thank you NOAH team for organising such a great event! Cognitiv+ was part of the shortlisted startups and our presentation was received very well from the internet companies and advisors in Berlin. 3000 people discussed new technologies and opportunities for two days and it was really great to discuss with internet companies what challenges are facing with their legal data.

Have a look at the video summary below that shows some great moments of the first day.