The FinTech Report Podcast: Episode 43: Philippa Watson, CEO at ubank

The FinTech Report Podcast: Episode 43: Philippa Watson, CEO at ubank

Philippa Watson is CEO of ubank, an award-winning digital bank owned by National Australia Bank. Prior to ubank, Philippa held a range of senior executive roles spanning digital banking, technology, operations, customer service, sales, finance, risk management, compliance, and strategy. These roles have involved accountability for functions in Australia, USA, UK, China and South Africa.

Philippa is passionate about the role organisations can and should play in community wellbeing. She believes that banks should offer customers accessible, uncomplicated, and high-tech banking services to help them be more successful with money.

Philippa Watson is also a Director of Lifeline Australia and NAB Ventures, the corporate venture capital arm of the bank, and a member of Chief Executive Women.

In this episode we discuss:

  • Background to Philippa’s career in banking
  • A brief history of ubank (started in 2008): savings accounts, home loans
  • Describing the past two years; the purchase and integration of 86400
  • Why did NAB/ubank buy 86400?
  • What was the decision behind keeping the ubank name but using the 86400 tech stack?
  • What does the tech stack provide?
  • Migrating customers to NAB and to the new ubank platform
  • Decommissioning legacy technology assets
  • Data and AI – how important are these things to ubank’s strategy? How do you leverage data from a customer and tailor products and services to help them?
  • Designing and delivering an acquisition engine that will attract and onboard active customers at scale through a combination of modern marketing techniques (for the digital generation of customers) and product features that have the potential for virality; and most importantly
  • Using data and technology to engage customers and help them succeed with money.
  • Opportunity and challenges for ubank?
  • Defining the culture at ubank
  • What is ahead for ubank?
  • Opportunities for future products?