The Business Plan seeks to transform the Bank’s business model via a significant investment plan that focuses in particular on innovation.
To this end, in the second half of 2014 the new Chief Innovation Officer (CIO) Governance Area was set up; this Area, reporting directly to the CEO, is tasked with identifying, analysing and developing innovation activities together with the other Group functions. The Chief Innovation Officer Area is based in the new Intesa Sanpaolo tower in Turin, which was also conceived as the physical centre of innovation within the Group.
This structure proposes and coordinates the Innovation Portfolio, i.e. the main series of initiatives (projects and studies) that the Group plans to support, in relation to the main emerging trends in the area of innovation, identifying the action plan, schedule, dedicated investments and expected returns for each one. The consistency of the initiatives in the Portfolio is guaranteed and the performances and economic and qualitative return for the Group are monitored. New innovation initiatives to add to the Portfolio are periodically verified, together with the competent structures (Business Units, Group Functions, Technology Hub etc.). The Innovation Portfolio for 2015 was confirmed in 2014 and is made up of around 55 initiatives proposed by the business units and 28 proposed directly by the Chief Innovation Officer Area.
The monitoring of the Portfolio initiatives is extremely important, not only for checking that the results are achieved in accordance with the schedule, but also for assessing the Group’s financial and image return. The details gathered during the monitoring phase are therefore used for the periodic drafting of suitable reports for the company’s Top Management.
Another important action area deals with the support and acceleration of the Group’s business innovation capacity through the analysis, conception and promotion of initiatives and solutions that can lead to new commercial opportunities and the development of the local areas and economy. Cornerstone of this activity is the "Innovation Monitor", which analyses and carries out research on the main trends and ideas, and assesses the areas of applicability of the innovative solutions. The Monitor carries out its role through collaboration with the other Group structures and through relationships and partnerships with research centres, universities, and start-up and innovation incubators.
The initiatives promoted in 2014 included:
- the projects connected with Expo 2015, which involve collaboration with Expo 2015 in 8 key areas of highly innovative content (e.g. the mass distribution of contactless payment cards and Mobility Proximity Payment solutions). Of particular importance is the “Innovative branch” area, which plans to identify and implement solutions aimed at ensuring that Italian and international visitors’ experience of the bank’s products at the EXPO is unforgettable.
- The "Created in Italia" e-commerce portal for promoting Italian excellence in the food, fashion, design and tourism sectors all over the world.
- the 3-year Integrated Multi-channel Platform project, launched in 2014, whose goals include improving customer satisfaction thanks to a distinctive and cutting-edge experience when accessing the bank’s services.
- the design of a new customer experience concept and branch layouts based on a programme of experience design workshops, with the aim of maximising commercial effectiveness and customer satisfaction.
In addition, the Chief Innovation Officer Area develops innovation projects on behalf of businesses, start-ups and new social enterprises. For further details see chapter “Support to the business system” @.
Finally, the structure guarantees the spread of a culture of innovation and develops innovation solutions through workshops (Experience Design Lab) aimed at conceiving and designing prototype products, services and solutions. For further details see chapter “Culture and development of innovation” @.
In 2015, the Area plans to launch a specific project called “Circular Economy Initiative”, which aims to make economic, environmental and social sustainability the competitive lever of a new paradigm of economic development. Planned activities include actions to raise awareness on the issue and dedicated training so that the Intesa Sanpaolo Group, as sponsor of EXPO 2015, is able to lead its business customers towards a new frontier for innovation that will redefine 21st century development.