FrankfurtValley
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FrankfurtValley

Germany’s new data ecosystem will revolutionize the financial industry

About 16 million Euros awarded to build The Financial Big Data Cluster, FBDC, research project and develop a secure, legally compliant and user-friendly financial data platform to advance machine-learning solutions across Europe’s financial ecosystem.

  • The cloud-based platform will provide access to sovereign financial data infrastructure. Suppliers and users of the data include European financial institutions, FinTech companies, public stakeholders and research institutions.
  • Financial Big Data Cluster (FBDC) is the use case in the financial domain of European GAIA-X initiative.
  • The FBDC represents the central use case for the financial sector. Closely linked to the establishment of the cluster is the research and development project.
  • During the research project, data sets will be used to create five use cases that will be researched, developed and prototypically validated using artificial intelligence and machine learning.
  • The project begins on January 1, 2021 and goes through 2023.

TechQuartier, the Hessen Ministry for Economic Affairs, State of Hessen and 11 project partners announced today the funding of a new research project of the Financial Big Data Cluster, FBDC, which is part of the European GAIA-X initiative. This new cloud-based platform will provide access to sovereign financial data infrastructure and will allow traditional European financial institutions, FinTech companies, public stakeholders and research institutions to share necessary information developed to strengthen innovation. The project will also promote data-driven business models in the financial sector throughout Europe.

Within the GAIA-X initiative started by the German government to develop the cross-industry European data infrastructure, the FBDC represents the central use case for the financial sector. Closely linked to the establishment of the cluster is the research and development project “safeFBDC.”

The research project, which begins on January 1, 2021, is the first of its kind in Europe and is a ground-breaking solution that gives data scientists the access to the data sets necessary to predict solutions for various financial use cases using machine learning and artificial intelligence.

TechQuartier will coordinate with collaborators from different business sectors and government organizations including industry and research partners Deloitte, Deutsche Börse Group, Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, Fraunhofer-Institute for Materials and Logistics (IML), Helaba Landesbank Hessen-Thüringen, main incubator, Refinitiv, SAP SE and TU Darmstadt. HAWK:AI and spotixx are two startups that are part of the consortium. Also included are more than 30 Strategic Partners.

The project’s consortium partners will also invest around 6 million Euros. An additional 10 million Euros was awarded after TechQuartier and the partners won the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs Innovation Competition “Artificial intelligence as a driver for economically relevant ecosystems.”

Funding for the project comes from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy whose goal is to promote the digital transformation of the German economy and develop concepts that clarify the need as well as the technological and economic benefits of GAIA-X. The GAIA-X project is created to build an efficient and competitive, secure and trustworthy data infrastructure for Europe.

“Since data is a highly valued commodity of the digital age, we need to ensure the competitiveness of German and European companies and research institutions by giving them safe access to reliable and clean financial data. Currently, this data is being stored in individual financial silos and is not available to the innovators and thinkers who are creating new data-driven solutions for topics like climate risk management and anti-money laundering,” Dr. Sebastian Schäfer, TechQuartier Managing Director, said.

“I am very pleased that we have been able to decisively advance the Financial Big Data Cluster (FBDC) financial center project this year. The federal funding of around 10 million € is a further milestone in the implementation of the project. We are creating the basis for Big Data and AI research applications to fundamentally strengthen the innovation ecosystem in the Frankfurt financial sector. In data-driven topics such as sustainable finance, market integrity and anti-money laundering, we expect this to bring significant benefits, both for the private sector research and especially for supervisory institutions,” Tarek Al-Wazir, Hessen Minister for Economic Affairs, Energy, Transport and Housing, said.

Structure

The research project will be the foundation for building a viable data infrastructure and platform model. It is made up of a complex combination of different components that ensure that data will be safely shared among approved collaborators. The infrastructure of this financial data platform will be conceptualized under the highest standards of data protection, data security and data sovereignty.

During the project, new AI-based methods based on five financial use cases will be researched, developed and prototypically validated. The demonstration of the first use case is planned in 2021.

It will contribute substantially to building and securing the long-term operations and growth of a European data ecosystem. This is not limited to financial data, but also across many other industries to produce economically viable projects and develop data-based products.

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