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First Bank organises Hackathon to boost technological advancement


By Stellamaris Ashinze


Lagos –   First Bank of Nigeria (FBN) Plc on Thursday organised the maiden edition of the Hackathon competition on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Big Data to boost technological advancements in the banking sector.

Mrs Lola Ekugo, Head, Digital Lab, FBN, said the competition was the first of its kind, in which innovators of 10 teams would compete to bring up innovative solutions to boost the banking sector.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 10 teams were shortlisted to participate in the two-day hackathon.

The participants were expected to develop some financial solution to boost banking services leveraging on AI and Big Data.

NAN reports that Hackathon is an event, typically lasting several days, in which a large number of people meet to engage in collaborative computer programming.

Ekugo said it was really important to continue to innovate and provide solutions for the customers base of over 12 million users.

“The digital lab was set up recently and the key objective is to champion innovation in the bank’s digital products engine over the coming years to save the future.

“So for us, the large focus is to build digital products and innovative solutions.

“We also collaborate with Fintech, which is why we are situated in Yaba which is like the Silicon Valley in Nigeria.

“What we will like to do and what we have communicated with the participants is that the first three participants will work with the team to bring up a solution that will benefit the bank.

“The focus of the Hackathon is to work with the participants and collaborate with the Fintech ecosystem to ensure that we can provide innovative solutions to our customers,’’ she said.

Speaking to NAN on the sidelines, Mr Job Oyebisi, Team Lead of Cashflow, a participant, said that the competition was an opportunity to partner with the bank to develop solution on financial services.

Oyebisi.said that his team was developing a solution on financial funding of Small Medium Enterprise (SME) leveraging on AI and Big data.

Earlier, Mrs Folake Ani-Mumuney, the Group Head, Marketing and Corporate Communications, FBN said that about N5 million had been earmarked for the first three positions.

The first position would cart away N3million; second, N1.5million; while the third gets N750,000 which will be awarded at the grand finale on Oct. 17.

NAN reports that the ten teams that participated in the ongoing competition were Team Sabi, Finnovators, Octave, Cheque Processing, Cybersmart, Cashflow, AI6 Abeokuta, Trigger, Venus and Ace.


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