Barclays has just opened the largest fintech lab in Europe

4 May 2017

Barclays bank building in London. Image: 4kclips/Shutterstock

Global banking powerhouse Barclays is doubling down on its commitment to the latest technology with the opening of the largest fintech lab in Europe.

While start-ups are seen as the driver of much of the innovation within the financial industry, some of the more traditional models are doing their utmost not to be left behind.

Last week, highlighted some of these players making their own efforts to power the latest developments in fintech, and British bank Barclays was among them.

Barclays recently revealed that it has opened a new fintech innovation lab in London, the largest of its kind in Europe.

Called Rise, the centre will be a collaborative space for Barclays to work with start-ups, developers and some of its other corporate clients on projects to “help to create the future of financial services”.

The space can house more than 40 fintech companies, along with banking and technology teams from Barclays, and will serve as a gathering place for fintech events and venture capital communities.

It is expected that it will play host to more than 200 hours of learning, workshops, hackathons and networking on a monthly basis.

Working with seven international centres

The Rise lab will partner with major corporates, investors and industry experts in seven other locations including: New York, Manchester, Mumbai, Cape Town, Vilnius, London and Tel Aviv.

The centre is also expected to explore greater opportunities within the fields of big data and blockchain.

The news follows Barclays announcement at the end of April that it was to create 750 jobs across the UK in its major technology centres.

“We believe that technology must be a core competency of a global financial institution, and we intend to be a leader in the industry,” said Jes Staley, Barclays’ group chief executive.

“Fintech start-ups are at the front of the technology wave that is changing our industry. Through Rise, we glean important insights; we can actively experiment with emerging technologies, and we can spot early trends and new markets as they form.”

Barclays Bank building in London. Image: 4kclips/Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic