Barcelona, 18 February 2016 – GFT, the international provider of innovative IT solutions and services and a leading specialist in the financial sector, will be an exhibitor at the Mobile World Congress, which takes place this year in Barcelona from 22-25 February. GFT is one of the companies participating in ‘4 Years From Now’ (4YFN), the third round of the international gathering of technology entrepreneurs. Its aim is to reach out to the 12,000 visitors and forge contacts with promising startups with a view to embarking on new collaborative projects at its digital banking lab.
Organised by Mobile World Capital Barcelona in collaboration with the GSMA, 4YFN is a meeting point for the growing global community of technology startups. The business platform brings together small businesses, investors and large corporations in order to bolster the entrepreneurial ecosystem. GFT is one of the companies that will have its own stand (S12) at the trade show in Barcelona.
“We want to establish more contacts with pioneering startups to continue positioning ourselves as an innovative company within a variety of fields. This will involve collaboration with the unique goal of accompanying our clients on the digital transformation journey,” states Carlos Eres, Managing Director of GFT in Spain.
The GFT digital banking lab
The GFT Group has spent several years promoting collaboration with startups, which the company considers a continual source of novel ideas. To this end, the group of companies set up CODE_n, an international innovation platform that connects startups, technology pioneers and established companies through a global network. The goal is to leverage disruptive trends in the financial sector, building on the innovative flair of participants in the platform.
In addition to CODE_n, GFT works with a variety of technology startups on ‘open innovation’, primarily through another initiative called ‘GFT Digital Banking Lab’. This lab is located at GFT’s Spanish headquarter in Sant Cugat del Vallès (Barcelona), where the GFT team carries out research and is working on ‘the bank of the future’, drawing on completely innovative processes. A second lab has been set up as a showroom and inspiring workshop area at GFTs Group-wide headquarter in Stuttgart, Germany. To do this, GFT created an open forum not just for its customers but also for other established companies in the financial sector, technological startups and FinTechs. The forum provides a location for joint projects and collaboration, allowing creative minds to unveil and solve the issues and challenges of digitalisation in the banking and insurance sectors.
GFT leverages its knowledge of the financial sector and its ability to assimilate the disruptive technologies developed by startups in the initiative. This is then channelled into alternative business models that should enable end customers to enjoy the benefits of superior banking experiences. These models will also give banks access to a whole new ecosystem of innovation, allowing them to master the fundamental revolution that is currently facing the international financial sector.
A multidisciplinary team of 30 experts is already working in the lab. This number is rising steadily as the lab is open to financial institutions, other companies in the sector, technology startups and FinTechs. One example of collaboration in the lab is a joint project with Viewsy, a British startup that captures location data generated by bank branches and transforms this into information that can be used to understand customer behaviour. A similar example is that of the Spanish startup Exipple, which has invented a technology that makes it possible to interact with computers and screens using gestures and hand movements. Other companies involved in lab collaboration are the Spanish companies Quarking and Easycrit, the British company shrtct, and the Amercian startups CartoDB and Monkeylearn.