In an attempt to further entrench itself into the FinTech space, Axis Bank has launched a Innovation Lab facility named “Thought Factory”. Located at the Diamond District of Bengaluru, the bank is collaborating with Amazon Internet Service, the Indian branch of Amazon Web Services and “The Open Vault” at Oversea Chinese Banking Corporation. The first batch of start-ups joining the program in September will focus on interesting uses for Artificial Intelligence(AI), big data analytics and robotics.According to Rajiv Anand, Executive Director at Axis Bank the Innovation lab is an endeavor to build on the ideas of innovators that can radically change consumers’ life in banking and beyond.
Under the program, Amazon will host sessions with AWS techinical experts along side offering AWS credits, conducting thought leadership talks, bootcaps and startups pitches and other such workshops. According to MD of Amazon Internet Services Bikram Bedi, this facility is very similar to its ‘pop-off lofts’ facility. To run the Accelerator program, the bank has partnered with Zone Startups. At the end of the 3 month program, the bank along Zone startups will organize an Investors Day in order to encourage investments for the short-listed startups.The bank is also working with NASSCOM 10K, tech partners, various VC firms, global banks and academia for creating a vibrant and successful ecosystem at a global scale.
Start-ups will benefit from having such a wide range of technical experts who will provide them with a structured mentorship program and help them to validate, fine tune and scale their business ideas for the masses. Another such mentor will be Visa who will partner with Axis Bank to co-create digital commerce solutions. The startups are already clamouring for a slot in the program and Axis bank is said to have received over 200 applications to be a part of the accelerator said to have been equipped with state of the art technology and will hopefully create an innovative environment for success. Axis bank seem to be extremely excited by the talent pool in the country and have reinforced their commitment to integrating technology with every day banking by initiating another program called ‘Hack for Hire’ under which participants from all over the country can take part in Hackathons and be selected to help the in-house innovation team at Thought Factory which could become a full time job as an employee at Thought Factory.
If all of this wasn’t enough, Axis bank plans to go all out to woo the start-up community across the nation by going on a roadshow to curate the best fit startups for the program. Axis bank has made several first during its endevour to create a world class lab in Bengaluru but for the bank, it’s all about making the lives of the consumer while making progress in the fin-tech industry.