Wednesday, 22 September 2021

Microsoft’s Yates: “Cloud adoption accelerated to build stronger digital foundation”

5 min read

By The Asian Banker

Greater need to drive innovation, business value and efficiency increased the momentum to cloud adoption and digital transformation among financial institutions (FIs)

The pandemic significantly increased the momentum towards digital transformation. 

“There is a great urgency and acceleration towards cloud adoption, with need to drive innovation, cost savings and improve customer experiences. There is a significant increase in cyber threats and the need for fraud detection among institutions. Digital transformation using cloud-based technologies and a ‘zero trust’ strategy, help organisations become intelligence-driven to serve their customers,” said Raymond Yates, vice president, Azure Cloud and AI, Microsoft.

New entrants in the financial in­dustry are more nimble, agile and monetise data effectively to tailor services. On the other hand, banks are saddled with disparate legacy solutions, fragmented applications and data sprawl. This complex technology environment is not just expensive but also difficult to integrate, vulnerable to cyber attacks and loses opportunities due to lack of intelligence insights.

“Banks need an effective data strategy, architecture, and technology to secure access and leverage heterogeneous platforms, multi-cloud, hybrid strategy,” pointed Yates.

Several banks are adopting cloud technologies to break down data silos, improve operational efficiency.

CMB implemented cloud to drive growth and efficiency

With growing competition, China Merchants Bank (CMB) felt a greater need to drive business value, agile processes and lower costs. In 2018, it implemented a multi-tenant advanced cloud platform with Microsoft. 

“CMB’s hybrid cloud project has four key parts. It includes a public multi-cloud catering to three different vendors, an on-premise data centre with new features to support the core business, edge management, and branch requirements. It has a unified cloud management portal and platform covering public and private cloud scenarios,” explained Yates.

Users could create resources faster. New services could be launched within weeks while the delivery time for virtual machines was shortened from hours to minutes. Server utilisation increased while the operating and licensing costs dropped. Over 50% of CMB’s business is already running in the cloud.

Several banks have embarked on cloud strategy

Emirates NBD launched a private cloud platform that provides applications and resources for development through ‘as-a-service’ model. The project reduced the infrastructure provisioning time, lowered storage costs and increased server utilisation efficiency.

DBS Bank migrated 99% of its applications from physical servers to a virtual private cloud, reducing its physical servers and data centre size. Standard Chartered Bank also recently embarked on a multi-cloud strategy. In China, Ping An Bank implemented a financial platform-as-a-service (PaaS) project to enhance security and reduce operation costs. 

Institutions find it increasingly important to competitively differentiate with speed to improve efficiency and resiliency.  It becomes urgent to reassess and build the right technology foundation today in order to succeed tomorrow.

This is a sponsored article and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the publisher.



Keywords: Digital Transformation, Cloud, Cyber Threat, Digital Platforms
Institution: Azure Cloud, Microsoft, China Merchants Bank, Emirates NBD, Standard Chartered Bank, Ping An Bank
Guest: Raymond Yates
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