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To partner or not to partner?

Every bank serious about taking on a digital innovation project should first take a step back and answer some important questions.  


1. Know your strengths


Where do you excel?

  • What skills do you have?
  • What successes can you draw from?
  • What’s worked in the past?


Where are the gaps?

  • Are your tech capabilities up to scratch? 
  • Do you have the right talent in house? 
  • Can you deliver against your goals?


How important is this project to your market position?

  • Is it going to be a differentiator?


The key here is to take a clear-eyed view and get a real understanding of what you’re capable of. Once you have that, choosing the right path is easy. 


2. Weigh your options


Do nothing

Buy it

Build it 


  • Stand still
  • Leave the field open for challengers
  • Let other banks take the lead
  • Scour the market for the right solution
  • Put innovation on hold while the deal is made
  • Hope integration goes smoothly
  • Source the talent and resources
  • Start from the ground up 
  • Try to avoid creating tomorrow’s legacy
  • Join forces with a tried and tested innovation expert
  • Take the fastest route to value
  • Deliver for your customers

3. Know that the best don’t go at it alone

80% of the top 100 global banks have at least one fintech partnership. And it’s easy to understand why. With the right fintech partner, they can:

  • Access the latest tech
    Fintechs embrace emerging tech and connect banks to the bleeding edge. 
  • Innovate around customer needs
    Fintechs create personalised financial experiences customers love. 
  • Go live quickly
    Fintechs build to plug and play. They’re fast, flexible and slash time-to-market.  
  • Control costs
    With predictable costs, there’s no more spiralling IT spending. 


4. Choose the right partner

Finding an innovation partner can be a straightforward process if you know what to look for. Here are a few things you should keep in mind during your search. 


1. Be clear on your purpose 

This goes back to having a real understanding of the shape your innovation capabilities are in and what you want to achieve. Clarity here is crucial, otherwise you could wind up with a partner that doesn’t fit. 


2. Know the capabilities you’ll need them to bring to the table

You understand where the gaps are at your end, but have you got your head round what your partner needs to make the project work?


3. Identify the end state and work on a clear roadmap

Make sure you and your partner have the same end goal in mind, and that you’re both on the same page about how you get there. 


And when it comes to what to look for in a partner, there are a few boxes they should definitely tick. 


The right partner:

  • Is an active collaborator
  • Has a delivery mindset
  • Boosts agility
  • Integrates seamlessly
  • Is made for flexibility


Find out more about how we can work together.

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