8 June 2017

Innovation Essentials: In Conversation with Angus Scott

Watch this series examining top tips from leading innovators in the financial industry on how to make innovation a success. This week: Interview with Angus Scott, Euroclear.

Angus Scott, Director, Product Strategy and Innovation, EuroclearOne of Euroclear’s goals is to reduce friction in transaction processing. The financial system is designed to bring together savers, who have excess funds, with borrowers, who need funds. Euroclear looks for ways to reduce the cost and risk of that basic function.  

Euroclear’s innovation team focuses on creating new services within a prescribed framework, ultimately leading to new opportunities for the company.  The team look for new ways to offer existing services, as well as create new services that can be offered to their network of participants. “It is a product diversification role,” explains Angus Scott, Director, Product Strategy and Innovation at Euroclear. “For us, innovation arises from transplanting Euroclear’s core DNA around transaction management, security, risk management and transaction efficiency, into new business contexts.”

The financial system, incorporating the basic economic function of matching borrowers and savers, is ripe for remodelling.

Angus Scott, Director, Product Strategy and Innovation, Euroclear

“We are working in an high value, risk adverse business to business market. It is interesting to see how innovation development methodologies – which focus on agility and responsiveness - can be applied into that kind of environment,” observes Scott. The Euroclear innovation team always start with an understanding of an underlying economic need. “Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) is a great example of a new approach that can stimulate different ideas, but you have to step back from the technology and focus on understanding what business problem you are trying to solve. We sit within the company’s product division, so we have to remember that, no matter how interesting the technology, we are ultimately trying to develop new business services,” Scott points out.

We are working in an high value, risk adverse business to business market. It is interesting to see how innovation development methodologies – which focus on agility and responsiveness - can be applied into that kind of environment.

Angus Scott, Director, Product Strategy and Innovation, Euroclear

Even where a new product or service looks like it could add value to clients, there are still practical hurdles that need to be crossed before it gets adopted. It is critical to create enough momentum to enable users to make their internal business cases and start to build critical mass.

“There is a recognition that the unfavourable economics of banking create a requirement for some sort of re-architecting of the system and a willingness in the industry to do this, but I do not think anyone has quite worked out how to reconcile that with the short-term difficulty of prioritising, funding and managing change,” concludes Scott.

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