It was time for Interview Day #7 to examine some of the hottest FinTechs tackling Data and AI.
In an age of information and advanced algorithms, we were so excited to see the new wave of possibilities that may shape the way we perceive, interpret and harness the power of digital intelligence.
Our 7th Stream spotlight is focused on Data and AI, and checks out the FinTechs who are working under the hood to make something magical happen.
Data and AI: Reinventing Financial Services with Advanced Tech Maturity
2023 has been a hugely impactful year for UK FinTech. Macroeconomic trends and rising interest rates have significantly challenged traditional FinTech / start-up funding routes with a c. 57% drop in investment into FinTechs via traditional channels in H1 2023 alone. Despite these challenges, 2023 has also been a year of incredible opportunity in the Data & AI space with the release of GPT-4 in March 2023 and the “GenAI-mania” that followed. Although this presents an existential challenge to many FinTechs, the creative destruction associated with such conditions should help prioritise towards the most lucrative opportunities and technologies across the sector.
2023 has also been a year of incredible opportunity in the Data & AI space with the release of GPT-4 in March 2023 and the “GenAI-mania” that followed.
The widespread excitement surrounding GenAI brings with it many opportunities, not least because only c. 10% of companies have a sufficiently mature data estate to use and benefit from the AI at the present time. This creates new “hot topics” in data which go beyond pipelines, tables and code and which connect directly to the organisational and human challenges associated with enabling Data & AI capabilities:
- Data Maturity: Enabling AI is dependent on the availability and usability of data across both structured and unstructured sources. 87% of industry senior executives say they won’t achieve their latest growth objectives without scaling Data & AI, yet less than 10% of the same audience felt their data capabilities could support these needs today. It is also worth noting that customer focused capabilities can only move as fast as a business’ data infrastructure, and therefore, this is when underinvestment in near real-time and mobile capabilities will begin to bite.
- Responsible AI: Safely utilising cutting edge AI capabilities at scale requires thought and preparation beyond traditional questions of fairness, as GenAI and LLM capabilities create opportunities as well as risks like unintended data access and model hallucinations. It’s important to note that this is not just governance frameworks and it extends to embedded technical capabilities.
Only c. 10% of companies have a sufficiently mature data estate to use and benefit from the AI at the present time.
- Data & AI Culture: To scale AI capabilities businesses will need to deeply understand these technologies. This is not just data literacy; businesses need to move from a “product” focus which moves bottlenecks to a transformational approach that automates them entirely (and staff need to be trained to operate in this new world).
- Tooling & Architecture: The Data & Cloud infrastructure that enabled key programmes over the last 5 years may not be the right solution for AI at scale today and the focus is shifting from things like less AI-native platforms to more diverse architectural landscapes with specific tools aligned to particular business needs.
This year’s Lab is an opportunity for us to dig deep into not just what is technically possible, but what we can feasibly enable within Financial Services firms today and tomorrow. This means a notable focus on some of the key areas outlined above as well as a constant eye on the horizon for new advances in an ever-changing world. Reinvention amongst Financial Services firms remains a critical theme as they look to prepare themselves for the latest Data & AI capabilities at scale, and in turn there is an onus on us as inventors, investors and system integrators to ensure proposed solutions are technically deliverable and aligned to business needs.
Sapan Dogra, Data and AI Managing Director
Keep an eye out for some exciting Data and AI offerings as we reveal our FinTech cohort for 2024!