Western Europe's best digital bank 2017: BNP Paribas
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Western Europe's best digital bank 2017: BNP Paribas

Awards for Excellence 2017

European banks announced numerous investment pledges in digital banking over the last year. The best banks see technology not as a threat but as an opportunity to grow. They are partnering with and investing in fintech disrupters.

On both these fronts, BNP Paribas stands out. Other banks realize the value of this approach, but partnering with fintech companies fits neatly with the French firm’s bolt-on acquisition strategy. It was not just a statement of intent, but also a reflection of a journey already begun, when BNP Paribas announced in February it would spent €3 billion on digitization in its new three-year plan. A Europe-wide network of incubator centres and tech labs associated with the bank (several launched this year) is evidence of that.

In retail banking, Hello bank! – the mobile-only bank BNP Paribas launched in 2013 – had notched up 2.5 million customers by the end of the awards period, with a network covering Belgium, France, Austria, Italy and, perhaps most interestingly, Germany. 

This year saw BNP Paribas’ car leasing arm launch a fleet-management telematics product, Arval Active Link, in markets including Spain, and start a new data partnership with PSA Group, Active Arval Access.

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