Union Bank of the Philippines signed a deal with open-source provider Red Hat to help the local lender accelerate the migration of mission-critical workloads from on-premises environments to the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud platform.
The bank said with AWS, it can now launch innovative financial services, like digital wallets, artificial intelligence-powered financial assistants, and mobile payment apps faster compared to using on-premises environments.
UnionBank also said it is pushing digital banking efforts forward with Red Hat OpenShift Service on AWS.
Red Hat OpenShift Service on AWS offers the foundation for building cloud-native applications on a Kubernetes open source framework.
With Red Hat OpenShift Service on AWS, organizations like UnionBank can use the wide range of AWS compute, database, analytics, machine learning (ML), networking, mobile, and other services to build security-focused and scalable applications faster.
UnionBank uses Amazon API Gateway and Amazon Elastic Container Service (Amazon ECS) to build new mobile banking products with microservices that support any application architecture, regardless of scale, load, or complexity.
For example, the bank integrated electronic “Know Your Customer” (eKYC) capabilities into its mobile app, allowing customers to submit documents digitally to open a bank account instead of via post or by visiting a physical branch.
Industry reports said Southeast Asia’s digital economy was worth an estimated $200 billion in 2022, and is backed by strong macro factors, including 460 million digital consumers, and high Internet penetration.
Yet, half the population remains unbanked with no access to financial products, and a further 18% are underbanked – lacking access to anything other than a bank account.
UnionBank said this presents opportunities for the financial services industry to provide millions of Filipinos with access to digital financial services, including bank transfers and money withdrawals, even in very remote areas, with financial services, using digital technology and data.
UnionBank’s continued drive for digital transformation includes using Red Hat OpenShift Service on AWS for a consistent and unified experience across its public and private cloud environments. This can include developing microfinance and micro-savings applications, which provide small-scale financial services to individuals who may not have access to traditional banking services.
“Growth of the Philippines economy is projected to bounce back by year-end to 5.3 percent and to 6 percent in 2024. With this encouraging news comes a compelling challenge to all Philippine banks to continue building agile and tailored products catering to evolving customers,” Dennis D. Omila, UnionBank CTO said.
“Red Hat OpenShift Service on AWS allows our teams greater autonomy and flexibility to deliver latest features and updates to meet market needs. The integration between Red Hat and AWS means we can better focus on delivering products that match our goal to Tech Up Pilipinas — or, enabling customers to live their best lives through the latest financial innovations.”
Prem Pavan, VP and GM, Southeast Asia and Korea, Red Hat, added: “60 million people in Southeast Asia became online consumers for the first time during Covid. This represents significant digital commerce opportunities for businesses to tap into, all underpinned by financial services.”