KPMG Australia today announced the launch of mLabs, a market-first corporate fintech accelerator connecting forward-thinking mutual Authorised Deposit-taking Institutions (ADIs) with some of Australia’s most exciting fintech startups.
KPMG mLabs is an immersive program co-designed with the mutuals to promote and accelerate innovation by identifying and developing commercial solutions to business challenges in collaboration with fintech startups.
KPMG mLabs is the brainchild of KPMG Australia, and follows the successful Energise accelerator run for the energy and natural resources sector last year. It has been designed to help mutual banks and credit unions and their members gain access to leading fintech innovators. It also provides a unique opportunity for fintech ventures to work with a number of like-minded mutuals in one program.
The program will be initially utilised by seven Australian mutual banks and credit unions: Beyond Bank, CUA, Greater Bank, Heritage, IMB Bank, Police Bank, and Teachers Mutual Bank.
James Mabbott, Head of KPMG Innovate, commented: “As a hybrid of startup accelerator and corporate innovation program, KPMG mLabs draws upon our experience delivering the Energise energy and natural resources startup accelerator, and the elevate61 program which connects Australian enterprise tech startups to US markets.”
“The KPMG Mutuals Review 2015 noted that mutuals are well placed to implement new technologies and ideas and to collaborate with fintech startups. KPMG mLabs is designed to catalyse this process. It will be a platform for collaboration and a safe space for experimentation – and help bring some exciting new services to life for mutual banks and credit unions and their customers.”
KPMG mLabs incorporates best practices from design thinking, startup incubators, lean methodologies and corporate innovation labs. Over the course of the accelerator, the seven mutuals will work closely with 14 fintech startups to ideate new solutions, test assumptions and co-create and prototype products and services.
Ian Pollari, KPMG’s Global Co-Lead for Fintech commented: “Established organisations increasingly recognise the strategic importance of engaging with and sourcing capability from the fintech start-up community. The objective of KPMG mLabs is to systematically foster greater levels of collaboration between the participating mutual ADIs and fintech startups. The mutuals are eager to engage the start-up community and for the fintech ventures, the prospect of innovating with the mutuals, who represent a combined customer base of more than two million, is a very attractive proposition.”
“Most importantly, KPMG mLabs will drive commercial outcomes for all participants, whether that be designing and launching new digital products and services, enhancing the customer experience or improving internal efficiency.”
Participants will follow a 12-week structured program providing access to expertise from KPMG mentors and industry advisors such as Chris Whitehead who has helped to tailor the program for the mutual sector, as well as Leona Murphy, previously head of strategy for IAG, and Andrew Davis formerly Global Fintech lead for HSBC.
For the first iteration of the mLabs accelerator, 14 Australian fintech startups have been curated by KPMG and selected based on input from mutuals around areas ripe for innovation.
The KPMG mLabs 2016 fintech startups are:
The KPMG mLabs accelerator will be hosted in Sydney at KPMG’s new Barangaroo office and at fintech hub Stone & Chalk. It kicks off on 12 July 2016 and culminates in a demo-day, where the fintechs will pitch their ideas and progress to investors and finance sector leaders.
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