News & Analysis

River City Labs to host hackathon with Bank of Queensland to find new solutions for banking customers

- May 16, 2016 3 MIN READ
BOQ Hackathon

River City Labs and the Bank of Queensland (BOQ) are set to host the inaugural BOQ Hackathon in the hopes of finding new solutions for its banking customers. On June 10 entrepreneurs and startups will have 52 hours to create new technology-based banking solutions to improve customer benefits and experiences.

Greg Pink, head of SME at BOQ said the bank is keen to see the development of ideas on how financial solutions can be improved to benefit its customers, the latest corporate to look to a hackathon to spur innovation within its own organisation.

“The BOQ Hackathon is one way we can engage via innovation within the industry and help identify budding entrepreneurs in Queensland,” he said.

BOQ is an example of a regional bank that understands the importance of innovation and disruption, offering a personal and business banking alternative to the big banks and priding itself on creating easy to understand banking products.

The 2016 BOQ Hackathon, to be held at BOQ’s head office in Brisbane, will provide a platform for fintech entrepreneurs to work together to convert innovative ideas and concepts into prototypes. Participants will work in teams of two to six and will pitch an idea within three core problem tracks: big data for small business, customer experience, and creative genius.

Within the first track, big data for small business, teams will brainstorm ideas for new products and services that utilise big data and social media to deliver value to BOQ business customers, improve and streamline internal processes and systems, or derive new insights and value internally at BOQ.

The second track, customer experience, is open to ideas on customer data and ways to deliver the best possible customer experience.

The third track, creative genius, looks for unique solutions relating to new or improved products and services in the financial sector, ideas which will benefit its personal and business banking customers, streamline internal processes, administrative procedures and risk assessments, and improve productivity for the Bank.

The winning teams will receive business mentoring sessions and cash prizes. T

Kaisu Christie, BOQ Head of Digital and Innovation, said the most important part of the weekend event will be idea generation, customer proposition development and business concept validation.

“We believe it’s important to provide a conducive platform for people to brainstorm, code, design and test their ideas in a stimulating, supportive environment. BOQ wants to foster innovation and translate thoughts into new products and services to benefit our customers, and the hackathon is the start of bigger things to come,” Christie said.

Startup teams will have the chance to pitch their prototypes to a panel of judges including Steve Baxter and founder of payment solution Ezidebit Michael Dempsey.

“It’s great to see BOQ take such an important first step to support entrepreneurship, both within their organisation and externally. It’s a great example to follow for many others in the financial world and corporate sector at large,” Baxter said.

Baxter has also been busy with the new season of Shark Tank, last night making an investment of $300,000 into peer-to-peer car sharing platform Car Next Door. Baxter’s investment adds to the startup’s aggressive capital raising strategy, which has seen $2.5 a million investment from Caltex and a further $1.3 million raise from VCs in the last six months.

Baxter said he was impressed by the pitch and that the peer-to-peer car sharing economy has a fast growth rate.

“The way we travel is changing fast and peer-to-peer carsharing is on the cusp of exponential growth; that’s something I want to be part of,” he said.

Startups and entrepreneurs can register for the BOQ Hackathon here.

Image: Kaisu Christie. Source: Supplied.