American multinational investment bank and financial services firm, Morgan Stanley, has shortlisted 16 startups in India and is planning to tie up with one of them to develop new and innovative solutions to help it navigate the technology road map.

Morgan Stanley will host Asia’s first CTO Innovation Summit in Bengaluru and will also listen to the ideas of 16 startups it has shortlisted and choose one of these startups to tie up with. The names and whereabouts of these 16 startups is not disclosed yet.

Notably, in every summer Morgan Stanley’s technologists hold a meet with cutting-edge firms and industry leaders in Silicon Valley to explore the emerging trends and new products. For India, the investment bank has chosen India's own Silicon Valley - Bengaluru.

Morgan Stanley is looking at startups working in AI, Machine Learning, automation, fintech, data analytics as some of the areas. Since the inception of the summit 17 years ago, Morgan Stanley had an interaction with more than 800 start-ups, many of which have become part of the firm’s tech ecosystem.

Bobby Gilja, CIO of Corporate and Funding Technology, Morgan Stanley, told a business daily, "For us technology should help the firm make money, save money or reduce risk and we look to work with the best talent, whether it’s our teams in Morgan Stanley or with external partners like start-ups."

Last year Morgaon Stanley had launched its Multicultural Innovation Lab, an accelerator program for technology and technology-enabled start-ups in the post‐seed to Series B funding rounds. The lab aims to help propel minority-led tech startups.

The first cohort of the startups Morgaon Stanley's lab had sponsored include five tech firms, spanning industries from commerce to finance. Its 2018 cohort startups include startups innovating in health, beauty and well-being, entertainment and ticket sales, nonprofit leadership, energy, online retail, family savings and software development.

MOrgaon Stanley had tied up with with California-based data aggregation startup Addepar to automate the administrative tasks, which will allow its wealth managers to dedicate more time to clients. This start-up is backed by tech billionaire Peter Thiel, with assets worth around $560 billion on its platform.

One of the reasons for the investment giant to choose Bengaluru is that many technology captives of multinationals have had their presence in India since early 1980s. Less than a kilometre from where Morgan Stanley's office, its competitors like JP Morgan, Wells Fargo have their India technology centres.

Morgan Stanley had entered India 15 years ago and after setting up its first centre in Mumbai, it had set up a centre in Bengaluru in 2014. Both the centres have around 3,000 employees and have increased their headcount in the range of 15-20 per cent on a yearly basis.

To recall, an another American entity and global banking and financial services provider, J.P. Morgan had recently collaborated with the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIM-A) affiliated CIIE to set up a Financial Inclusion Lab (FIL) that will focus on early-stage fintech startups with innovations that address the unique needs of the lower and middle income (LMI) segment.

The Lab will also host a series of accelerator programs to identify solutions for specific financial challenges, and leading ideas

Source - Business Line

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