Friday, 14 June 2024

Huawei unleashes four key strategies to forge a smart future in finance

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Huawei Intelligent Finance Summit 2023 in Shanghai explored ways to expedite digital transformation and enhance digital productivity using innovative technologies

  • Huawei Intelligent Finance Summit 2023 held in Shanghai on June 7 
  • Reveals four strategic directions for financial industry transformation 
  • Facilitates continuous collaboration with global customers and partners to shape smarter finance together 

Under the theme Navigate Change, Shaping Smarter Finance Together, the Huawei Intelligent Finance Summit 2023 in June attracted over 2,000 industry leaders, experts, and innovators from more than 300 global financial institutions. 

In his keynote speech, Jason Cao, CEO of Huawei Global Digital Finance, saidThe world is rapidly approaching a milestone of 100 billion connections, with an explosion of data at the ZB level. We have officially entered the era of ZFLOPS, where the power of artificial intelligence (AI) has surpassed the inflection point and is now driving transformation across various industries and services.  

To thrive in the intelligent era, we must re-evaluate our approach to connections, data, applications, and infrastructure, and fully embrace digital technologies to build future-oriented core competitiveness. 

As the financial sector converges with an increasingly intelligent world, it uncovers unprecedented possibilities. Financial services are transcending the bounds of mobility, integrating with super apps and ecosystems. Intelligence is at the helm of crafting novel user interaction experiences while bolstering productivity. 

In response to the dynamic needs of users as well as to optimise return on equity, the financial services industry has adopted streamlined and inventive services. This demand is further amplified by the need for an open and agile architectural framework, real-time intelligent decision-making capabilities, and a significant infrastructural upgrade. 

Huawei reveals four strategic directions for financial industry transformation 

In a bid to amplify its influence in the financial sector, Huawei is committed to increase strategic investment into foundational technologies to reshape the paradigm. As part of this commitment, Huawei announced four strategic directions for the financial sector: building resilient infrastructure, accelerating application modernisation, enhancing data-driven decisions, and enabling scenario innovation.  

Building a resilient infrastructurethe foundation of financial services 

Financial services are quickly transitioning towards always-available, penetrating services, prompting significant infrastructure challenges. This evolution entails a shift from branch services to scenario-based finance, from physical to digital transactions, and from manual operations to AI-driven decision-making.  

Huawei is facilitating this rapid infrastructure transformation by building a MEGA infrastructure. The name stands for the concept of Multi-DC-as-a-Computer and the peer-to-peer computing of CPUs, GPUs, and NPUs to enable the multi-active data center to run efficiently, just like a computer, and deliver end-to-end experience.”

The MEGA infrastructure supports the evolution from traditional mainframes to cloud-native, containerised architecture, and eventually to a hybrid multi-cloud. This process includes deploying container-based applications in multi-active mode for resilience and imposing higher standards on multi-cloud management and network synergy.

Among Huaweis four strategic directions, building resilient infrastructure stands out, hence the focus on MEGA infrastructure. Cao added: “The core concept of MEGA is problem-solving from a cross-domain perspective rather than a single system view.  

Huawei also prioritises end-to-end user experience and sustainable infrastructure, implementing features like one-hop access to cloud services and green computing solutions. It employs intelligent autonomy in distributed systems to enhance operations and maintenance efficiency, exemplified by rapid problem detection, location, and resolution using digital mapping. 

Accelerating application modernisation 

Cao commented: “The platform+service model is the key to financial business agility, and application modernisation is the only way to achieve it.”  

This transformative journey begins with the creation of a robust, multi-active, secure, and compliant fundamental platform that embeds service-oriented architecture to handle atomic business operations like funds and accounts. 

An essential part of this foundational platform is the cloud-native core system. The core database employs unitisation to minimise the disaster radius and separates storage and computation resources to maintain high availability. The distributed core enables secure migration of core systems and the agile innovation of composable components. 

In parallel, application modernisation plays a crucial role. It incorporates cloud-native DevOps, using DevSecOps or agile development, and Astro for low-code applications. Furthermore, core applications and data models are deployed and executed through cloud-native software-as-a-service (SaaS). 

With this foundation and modernisation in place, integrating high and low code can facilitate the delivery of composable services. It also allows for the creation of tailored products and services and their integration into diverse ecosystems. The synergy of the platform+service model, application modernisation, and cloud-native systems can dramatically boost the agility of financial businesses. 

Enhancing data-driven decisions  

The financial sector is awash with data, and using this data effectively is a must for all institutions. Banks face an annual increase of over 30% in data volume, making the task of unlocking its value both challenging and crucial. Huawei proposes a strategy incorporating two elements: an Industrial Data Hub and an AI Hub. 

The Industrial Data Hub offers high-quality data assets with secure and reliable transfers, modernising banking intelligence to enable access to data for all. Meanwhile, the AI Hub enhances modelling efficiency and ensures trustworthy applications. 

Inclusivity is another critical factor, with data and AI supporting areas like marketing, risk control, and operations. Real-time analysis platforms in marketing enable more effective retail strategies, while real-time decision-making engines support risk control for small and medium-sized enterprises. Technologies like optical character recognition and natural language processing in operations increase efficiency, providing more precise customer insights. 

To realise this strategic direction, five key areas of data intelligence capabilities need to be upgraded: data architecture, data governance, data consumption, data security, and data talent. This model allows for a four-step escalation in data value, transitioning from operation to data, data to information, information to knowledge, and finally from knowledge to action, thus facilitating AI-driven productivity and effective decision-making. 

Enabling scenario innovation 

Huawei addresses a range of scenarios including cold chain, bulk commodity, dry bulk, and standard products, integrating an array of capabilities from its product lines. Using edge-intelligent perception, the Pangu CV model, and laser radar+3D reconstruction algorithms, Huawei solves real-time management and control issues in various production financing and operational domains. 

An innovative device-edge-cloud collaboration has been at the heart of these initiatives. This collaboration is evident in inventory financing, which leverages cloud-pipe-edge-device collaborative monitoring and blockchain for ownership confirmation, ensuring physical and ownership trustworthiness.  

Further innovation is seen with E-CNY, where blockchain-based smart contracts and TEE security drive digital currency scenario innovation. Huawei also promotes a thriving scenario ecosystem. The Huawei Cloud financial ecosystem offers SaaS for various sectors including education, agriculture, and supply chains. 

Through these strategies, Huawei builds device-edge-cloud-AI Industrial Finance Platform, aiming to guarantee trusted supervision, ownership, and valuethe three crucial dimensions of trust in industry digital finance. 

Looking ahead, Huaweis commitment to unveiling new business opportunities and devising solutions aligns with the four strategic directions in finance. The objective is to assist financial institutions in crafting a connected, agile, user-centric, and collaborative system, and to achieve real-time, integrated, and shared intelligence, enabling ubiquitous financial services across all scenarios and locations. 

Collaboration with global customers and partners shape smarter finance  

Huawei has dedicated 13 years to the financial industry. To date, Huawei has served over 3,300 financial customers in more than 60 countries and regions, including 50 of the worlds top 100 banks. 

Bob Chen, Vice President of Huawei Enterprise Business

Through deep collaboration, Huawei has empowered more than 150 customers around the world to modernise their applications and upgrade their core systems, including Bank of Communications and BDO Unibank.  

Huawei helped the Bank of Communications build a data platform that constructs its lake warehouse. Huawei also helped Standard Chartered Bank Thailand to modernise its digital credit services, and Indonesian digital lender Bank Neo Commerce to build cloud-native digital banks.  

Huaweis data intelligence solution has currently served more than 100 financial institutions worldwide, and has supported the construction of data platforms in China for China Merchants Bank, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank, Haitong Securities, and China Life.  

In addition, Huawei is exploring innovative applications of financial models with Agricultural Bank of China using AI capabilities. 

Huawei has been instrumental in partnering with China Construction Bank (CCB) to build the worlds first 5G+Intelligent Bank. This ground-breaking initiative offers innovative application scenarios such as the Financial Capsule, Smart Teller Machine, home bank, and robots, bringing together 327 functions to reshape the financial service journey for customers.  

Integrating online and offline mobile banking services, WeChat banking, and physical branches, the 5G+Intelligent Bank delivers an engaging and interactive experience that streamlines transactions and reduces queuing time. 

Given CCBs global presence with over 10,000 branches, there was a critical need to enhance operations and maintenance efficiency. Huaweis SD-WAN and 5G technologies were introduced, with the 5G network providing ultra-high bandwidth and ultra-low latency as the foundation for intelligent banking. Above this 5G underlay, SD-WAN created an overlay network, enabling quick construction of high-speed interconnection channels between CCBs branches and financial cloud.  

This setup, managed by the cloud-based iMaster NCE, allowed for automated configuration for complex branches, thus extending the reach of CCBs inclusive financial services and facilitating the rapid rollout of 5G+Intelligent Banks. This unique blend of 5G and SD-WAN sets a new standard for optimising wide area network in the banking sector.  

During the Huawei Intelligent Finance Summit, Huawei signed cooperation agreements with multiple financial institutions to release new solutions and upgrade the innovative technical capabilities of multiple information and communication technology products and portfolio solutions. Huawei is committed to promoting the comprehensive development of digital talent, and works closely with the industry to achieve this goal. 

Moving forward, Huawei remains committed to advancing cutting-edge technologies and exploring new scenarios, while at the same time collaborating with customers and partners to build fully connected, fully intelligent, and all-scenario digital finance. By navigating changes with agility and innovation, Huawei aims to enhance digital productivity and create a brighter future together. 

In the next three years, Huawei will establish deep collaborations with customers, industry associations and partners to upskill 50,000 digital professionals for the industry, laying a solid foundation for financial transformation. 

Huawei Intelligent Finance Summit 2023 was held June 7-8 in Shanghai, China. Under the theme Navigate Change, Shaping Smarter Finance Together, the two-day summit witnessed Huaweis key strategies and strategic MOU signing in the finance sector, along with its newly-launched solutions. Industry leaders gathered and shared their insights on digital trends for the future of finance and discussed successful cases. For more details, please visit [here]. 


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