Sunday 30 December 2018

YES BANK Datathon unites professionals and academia to co-create next-gen data driven products.

Datathon Yes Bank Data Analytics Fintech

Technology and Banking are no longer poles apart. Over the last few years, innovation in the fintech industry has taken the world by storm, becoming a global phenomena not limited to one region. The Asian fintech space was dominated by innovations from Indian and Chinese firms, especially from the new-age startups. Being a software superpower, Indian startups and MNCs are contributed immensely towards the development of innovative products and models.

This year, we all have witnessed the growth of game-changing technologies like UPI, Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence and Open Banking. Global technology giants like Google, WhatsApp were wooed by the United Payments Interface, making India a top destination of digital payment adoption. Blockchain, which is also the underlying technology for all cryptocurrencies is implemented by banks to secure financial transactions.

Experts who have closely followed these trends believe that the next wave of fintech would be in the field of data science. YES BANK, India’s fourth largest private bank has been at the forefront for adopting next-gen technologies to service its customers better. YES BANK believes that the best of outcomes in the field of technology is received from the engineers and data scientists of tomorrow – the students. The idea generation from aspiring data scientist and its execution under the mentorship of CIOs and CTOs would be key in building scalable models in the data science ecosystem.

Data scientists, engineers, students from Top colleges, all compete at the Datathon.

Datathon, India’s first bank led Datathon collaborated aspiring data scientists and professionals from IT field to augment YES BANK’s 600 TB anonymized and embedded data stack to create new Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning (AI/ML) prototypes in a period of just 100 days. In its inaugural season, more than 6000 aspiring data scientists/ engineers and developers joined this competitive initiative. The top teams include not only students from top technology institutes like the IITs, BITS, ISI Kolkata and University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka but also 150 plus professionals from top IT organisations.

Participants at Datathon got an opportunity to access unstructured and anonymised data on Cloudera and AWS dashboards. YES BANK had also onboarded a pool of 20+ data science experts and leaders across industries, to support the data science teams as well as to help the bank identify relevant use cases for product development using Big Data Analytics, AI and ML. After the detailed scrutiny of models, top 15 teams were invited to Bengaluru to present their models in front of esteemed panelists at Datathon Finale.

Data models developed during the Datathon were aimed at addressing the current business and service requirements. For instance, team Django Unchained has created an AI based application for sales representatives of the bank which enables them to measure share of wallet reserved for every retail customer, predict customer attrition and provide customized products to different classes of customer. Team Prayaas, a mix student team from NMIMS Mumbai and ISI Kolkata worked on a proactive model which predicts individual customer deliveries like cards, cheque books, statements by reducing human interference and service requests. Majority of models presented at Yes Datathon pointed towards improving customer satisfaction and reducing overheads; a facet of fintech.

And the winners are...

Oracle, a team of professionals from IBM and two students from IIM Bangalore bagged the top spot of Yes Datathon challenge. Team Oracle presented a ‘master product’ which creates a single 360 degree view of every retail customer. Upon analysis, the model provides customised product and service recommendations for every individual retail customer along with the resolution of pending service requests. Team Data Pros and Data Acers from the University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka were honoured with runners-up and Best Student Team (position) at Yes Datathon challenge.

YES BANK plans to deploy the selected data models in the real-time banking ecosystem by March 2019. YES BANK believes in the ideology of consistently adopting next-gen technologies to deliver superior products and services. Datathon is also actively partnering with top technology institutes, and has partnered with top IITs and BITS Pilani, and will also host AI/ML challenges and data engineering workshops to deepen practical and technical knowhow of future technology leaders and widen the data science ecosystem. Yes Datathon is a part of a long-term strategy of YES BANK of ‘becoming a technology company in the banking business’.

- Chaitanya Kulkarni.

Monday 24 December 2018

#DialDforData: YES BANK’s Data Science Initiative Collaborates with 200 Data scientists to create 20+ data models in just 100 days.

Yes Bank Data Science DataThon IIT

Over the years, data has been an analytical tool to record and gather information from our surroundings to optimise our lives. The millennials would recall how we as society shifted from being predominantly ‘analog’ to ‘digital’ in just a few years. Today, thanks to technologies like the cloud and the algorithm-based infrastructure, data evangelists are talking about storing and analysing thousands of terabytes of data within a matter of minutes. This exponential growth of data is referred to as Big Data.

Big Data is our present and our future. In this age of information, data will fundamentally change the way businesses compete and operate. The analysis of this data could help businesses in making key management decisions which drive scalable transformation. Data scientists funnel vital data from terabytes of unstructured information to understand consumer buying patterns, likes and needs, and create scalable models which reduce systemic bottlenecks.

If data is a new oil then analysis is the refinery. The Internet of Things, Machine Learning, Predictive Analytics, Hadoop etc. are leading industrial trends which are shaping the data-driven economy.

Data Analytics: the next frontier.

The impact of data analytics will be beyond one sector, be it manufacturing, healthcare or finance. For instance, data science has today become a vital part of sports management industry. Each and every player of Indian Cricket Team is analysed on his current and past performance to predict behavioural patterns in an effort to rectify human error. BFSI firms are one of early pioneers to adapt data analytics.

With data science and analytics gaining importance across sectors, YES BANK reached out to the global developers, coders and data science community to work on Yes Bank’s data stacks. Datathon, an initiative of YES BANK is India’s first bank-led Datathon with a mantra of decode-derive-develop. Launched in September 2018, Yes Datathon has witnessed participation of over 6000 plus data scientists and engineers both from academia and corporate background. In a competitive selection, top 15 teams qualified for the Datathon Finale will be given 60 days to create working data models/prototypes which will be trained, tested and deployed by the Yes Bank.

The top teams include not only students from top technology institutes like IIT Bombay, IIT Madras, IIT Kharagpur and ISI Kolkata but also 150+ professionals from organizations like IBM, Walmart Labs, Oracle, Amazon Development Centre, TCS, Accenture and Infosys among others, who are taking on the challenge beyond their professional duties. A student team from University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka presented their model at Yes Datathon finale held in Bengaluru.

Teams participating in Yes Datathon presented innovative models which were previously not thought-off. For instance, Team Data Pirates created an alternative method to credit score customers pooling in LinkedIn and external APIs. Team Greenity has developed an ML algorithm which analyses credit card history transactions to service customer better and predicting new target customers for YES BANK credit card.

Moving from buzz to biz

Artificial Intelligence has moved from buzz to biz. YES BANK has deployed AI based chatbot named Yes Robot to disseminate information about loan offerings to prospective customers. It currently helps users with instant 20+ banking services and 2,000+ banking queries. Next-gen technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, natural language processing and bots enables YES BANK to serve their customers and clients with greater depth, sophistication and efficiency.

Yes Datathon is a part of a long-term strategy of Yes Bank of ‘becoming a technology company in the banking business’. Data scientists and engineers would have an experience of a lifetime handling 600 TB of anonymised data. Datathon provides a rare opportunity to build algorithms and data models on Terabytes of ‘real data’ in a deployment-ready environment. The collaboration between academia and corporate would deepen practical and technical know-how of future technology leaders and widen the data science ecosystem.

- Chaitanya Kulkarni.

Friday 7 December 2018

#PetroRupee! - India signs currency swap agreement worth Rs 3,500 crores with UAE.

Source - PMOIndia

India and the United Arab Emirates have signed two agreements, including one on currency swap, during the visit of the External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to Abu Dhabi. The decision was announced after the 12th session of the India-UAE Joint Commission Meeting (JCM) for Economic and Technical Cooperation, which was held on 3-4 December in Abu Dhabi.

The countries signed an agreement on a currency swap between the Reserve Bank of India and the Central Bank of the UAE. According to the agreement, two countries can make payments in their national currencies — Indian rupees and Emirati dirhams (AED), avoiding the involvement of a third currency, which is designed to boost bilateral trade.

Currency Swap is such a pact between two countries that allows trading in their own currency and payments to import and export trade at pre-determined exchange rate without bringing in a third benchmark currency like the US dollars.

Sushma Swaraj and Indian officials also had exhaustive discussions with her UAE counterpart Abdullah bin Zayed to step up bilateral cooperation in areas like security, defence, counter-terrorism, trade and energy.

Earlier, India and Japan had signed a currency swap agreement of whopping $75 billion dollars which would help both the economies to trade in respective local currencies. After fear of US sanctions, India is in talks with Iran to deal in local currencies. Currency swap agreements would help both producer and consumer economies to deal in local currencies instead of volatile US dollars.

- Chaitanya Kulkarni.