Corporate TreasuryFinancial Supply ChainHSBC, IBM work on AI for global trade

HSBC, IBM work on AI for global trade

The global bank has joined forces with the tech giant in developing cognitive intelligence technology.

HSBC is working towards the introduction of artificial intelligence (AI) to global trade, by applying IBM’s optical character recognition and cognitive technology to automate the processing of paper documents in trade finance transactions. The solution employs several IBM tools, including optical character recognition, to identify relevant documents and read the information to find the parts required before feeding the insights back to the bank’s transaction processing systems.

The technology can analyse the 100m documents that HSBC’s global trade and receivables finance (GTRF) team currently processes annually to service customers, enabling staff to focus on other areas of their job instead of manually reading through invoices, packing lists and insurance documents. “The average trade transaction requires 65 data fields to be extracted from 15 different documents, with 40 pages to be reviewed,” said Natalie Blyth, HSBC’s global head of GTRF.

“By digitising this process we will make transactions quicker and safer for both buyers and suppliers, leading our industry forwards, and we will reduce compliance risks through an enhanced ability to manage huge volumes of data.”

The technology is currently used for English language transactions across Asia, Europe, North America and Latin America. As the platform becomes more intelligent HSBC plans to introduce further languages over coming months, including French, Spanish and Chinese.

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