Innovation Shines Brightly in Asia Pacific Banks in 2015; Industry Commits More Budget and Mindshare: IDC Financial Insights

Innovation Shines Brightly in Asia Pacific Banks in 2015; Industry Commits More Budget and Mindshare: IDC Financial Insights


By Michael Araneta, IDC Financial Insights Asia/Pacific


IDC Financial Insights believes pursuing innovation in 2015 will be to the advantage of large regional banks.


The superregionals and the large tier 1 domestic banks will have higher than usual IT budgets in the upcoming year, not just simply because they have a lot more ground to cover, but also because they are more determined to transform and innovate.


They are now taking much more than their fair share of IT budgets industry-wide. Thus, we would caution smaller institutions, because more than ever, small-tier banks might be crowded out because of the deeper pockets of their large bank counterparts.


Large banks will be able to attract the best skills and talent, supporting their effort to bring in new ideas on the new ways of banking and execute such ideas well. Technology vendors will also deploy their A-teams to strategic accounts, leaving mid-tier banks hanging.


The result: Large banks, which are already seeing the advantage of regulatory support, public regard, and more opportunities amid regional integration, might just have the innovation advantage too.


Spending on “new” categories of technology


IDC Financial Insights observes that 25% is the new benchmark in Asia Pacific banks for spending on “new” categories of technology, as opposed to spending on “business-as-usual”.


After speaking to 180 financial institutions in the Asia/Pacific region about their IT investment plans, we observed an upsurge in investments on emerging technologies and newly-minted concepts. These will continue to gain management attention, as they investigate how they can innovate, and what technologies they need to innovate with.


IDC Financial Insights believes this pursuit of innovation will shape the overarching trends in the industry in 2015. The top ten predictions for 2015 are:


  1. 25% of IT Budgets Will Be Allocated to Many New Concepts
  2. Large Banks Will Crowd Out Smaller Competitors in Many Areas, Including in Innovation
  3. The Industry Will Move Toward Lifestyle Banking, Adding Advisory, Aggregation, and Facilitation to Bank Offerings
  4. Cloud-First Policies Will Gain Momentum
  5. Risk Analytics, Data Aggregation, and Regulation (RADAR) Will Be the New Orientation for IT Investments in Risk Management
  6. The Growth of Digital-Only Customer Segments Will Raise Urgency for the Omni-Channel
  7. Disruptions Will Cause Payments Revenue to Shrink — Some by at Least 15%
  8. Big Data Programs Will Become Tactical, While Data Management Becomes More Strategic
  9. “Nationalistic IT” Will Set the Stage for Asia/Pacific Vendors to Also Go Super-Regional
  10. Asia Will Lead the Adoption of Bank Payment Obligations (BPO), But Growth for Now Will Mostly Come from Cannibalizing Letters of Credit


Regional banks must prepare themselves for the impact of new technology considerations including the omni-channel, new types of customer touch points, tactical programs in Big Data analytics, next-generation payments, software-defined datacenters, risk analytics, gamification, and mobile micro-apps.


Internet-of-Things (IoT), robotics, cognitive systems, human interfaces and sophisticated analytics are some emerging technologies that are not currently being featured among banks, but need to be explored for their use cases in financial services.


IDC Financial Insights is confident that the new year will see other organizations from different industries partner with banks, either through joint venture tie-ups co-opetition consortiums, shared infrastructure arrangements, or through traditional industries extending their footprint into banks.


The impact will be observed in how value chains in financial services will see major disruptions. These can be in the areas of payments, value-added data, origination, customer on-boarding, and credit analytics.


This is a good time for banks to consider how they will require new sets of skills to be acquired or developed in the IT organization. These skills might not be traditional banking skills but they will be necessary to assess the risks, rewards, and opportunities around the 3rd Platform of IT.



More details can be found in the report, “Asia/Pacific Banking 2015 Top 10 Predictions: Banking Beyond the Usual” (IDC Financial Insights Doc #AP250872), November 2014

Michael Araneta is Director, Consulting and Research at IDC Financial Insights Asia/Pacific. Contact Michael at




About IDC’s Predictions

IDC’s annual Predictions in APEJ draws upon the latest IDC research and a worldwide brainstorming exercise among IDC’s 1000+ analysts. This was followed by an extensive regional review to weigh in on key industry events, user trends, vendor strategies and economic measures that promises to uniquely define the technology trends that would impact and drive the market in APEJ for 2015. Across the globe, following the release of IDC’s global top ten predictions, IDC’s geographic, technology and industry teams will be releasing their own specific predictions in the coming months.


About IDC Financial Insights

IDC Financial Insights assists financial service businesses and IT leaders, as well as the suppliers who serve them, in making more effective technology decisions by providing accurate, timely, and insightful fact-based research and consulting services. Staffed by senior analysts with decades of industry experience, our global research analyzes and advises on business and technology issues facing the banking, insurance, and securities and investments industries. International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology market. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world’s leading technology, media, research, and events company. For more information, please visit, email, or call 508-620-5533. Visit the IDC Financial Insights Community at

About IDC

International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1,000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. For more than 50 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world’s leading technology media, research, and events company. Learn more about IDC by visiting


For press enquiries, please contact:

Michael Araneta

Director, Consulting and Research

IDC Financial Insights Asia/Pacific

Emily Chia

Media Relations and Marcomms

IDC Asia/Pacific