Union Bank of the Philippines (UnionBank) successfully held the virtual groundbreaking ceremony last May 26, for its Innovation Campus, a real property development that will support its innovation initiatives. The event marked a very important milestone in UnionBank's digital transformation journey, which began half a decade ago.
The first-in-industry facility, which is being built on a
one-hectare property in San Pedro, Laguna, will act as a hub for research and
development that will further boost the Bank’s digital capabilities. In
addition, the campus will house various centers of innovation within UnionBank,
including its institutes on Data Science and Artificial Intelligence,
Blockchain, its digital bank EON, as well as the recently-launched Asian
Institute of Digital Transformation (AIDT), which is in partnership with Global
Learning Solutions Singapore.
In a special message during the event, UnionBank President and CEO
Edwin Baustista called the Campus "a dream come true and a testament to
the commitment of Management and the Board to innovation as a major strategic
thrust" of the Bank and its parent conglomerate, the Aboitiz Group.
"This is a major step for us and it is also an affirmation that
even during this crisis times, there are companies who continue to invest in
the future of the Philippines. The Philippine government, or one of the
Secretaries, said that the Philippines can be a major hub for AI, maybe in
Asia. We can certainly make this little corner in San Pedro, Laguna, the
epicenter of AI, Blockchain and all those wonderful technologies that this Bank
is harnessing in order to create the future of banking," Bautista said.
Yngen Holdings President Eugenio Ynion was also among the key
figures who joined the event. A long-time collaborator of UnionBank, Yngen
Holdings has helped co-create many solutions that utilize the Bank's expertise
in digital banking. During his message, Ynion said that the Campus is proof of
UnionBank's digital leadership and unwavering commitment to supporting Filipino
"We celebrate another milestone because the UnionBank
Innovation Campus is also the first out of many more establishments that will
be part of The San Antonio Digital Hub. Soon to rise is a structure that will
not only be a testament to UnionBank’s great leadership, but likewise to its
commitment in making a difference to the Filipino community," Ynion said.
Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin Diokno and
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez congratulated UnionBank and expressed their
confidence in the Bank's capability to nurture new talent and create solutions
amid the pandemic though the Campus.
"Indeed, this initiative is both timely and remarkable; timely
because we need to harness our talents and skills to build back better and rise
from adversity, and remarkable because of the challenges brought about by the
COVID-19 pandemic," said Gov. Diokno.
"This facility will be a breeding ground for cultivating new
talent, evolving new products, and developing new ways to be competitive in the
new economy. It is a landmark for the Philippines' relentless push towards
comprehensive digitization," Sec. Dominguez said. “UnionBank has earned a
well-deserved reputation for cutting edge innovation. The Bank has also been a
reliable partner of the Social Security System and the Bureau of Treasury that
enabled Filipinos all over the world to participate in the government’s bond
offerings despite the pandemic. The Bank has been instrumental in helping us
achieve President Duterte's goal of financial inclusion and a comfortable life
for all Filipinos," he added.