Morgan Stanley says India key to its global tech strength

Venkatesha Babu | | Updated on: May 12, 2022
              Peter Akwaboah,
Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Technology and the Global Head of Innovation 
Morgan Stanley

Peter Akwaboah, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Technology and the Global Head of Innovation Morgan Stanley

The No 1 investment bank doubles headcount in two years

Morgan Stanley, one of the world’s largest investment bank and financial services company, says India remains a strong focus for it and the country has provided key talent for providing innovative solutions to its global operations. Peter Akwaboah, the Chief Operating Officer of Technology and Global Head of Innovation at Morgan Stanley, says the technology team headcount in the country has doubled to 7,000 in the last two years underscoring India’s importance to the company’s global operations. Of the 75,000 employees MS has globally, 9,000 are in India including 7,000 in the technology team alone.

Over the last couple of years, during the pandemic, MS customers need for innovative digitised needs ‘became more, complex and sophisticated’ says Akwaboah. MS — which had annual revenues of $60 billion last year and more than $6 trillion of assets under management (AUM) — is a leading player in institutional securities business, wealth and investment management.

Digitised tech team

Stating that ‘ our customers are becoming very sophisticated in what they do from a digitised economy point of view, our mandate is really to provide those kinds of cool, innovative solutions using Artificial Intelligence and Machine Language for our clients. India provides some of the key talent that we’re seeing to solve some of those innovative ideas. What we’re building in technology globally, India is the second largest overall, after New York,’ he added.

While MS works with some of the Indian IT services providers like Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), the company also due to Intellectual Property (IP), resiliency and risk management reasons continues to scale its own internal technology team too.

“We have the best of both worlds philosophy, because there are things that (players like) TCS can provide..and for IP and maintaining continuity, we have our (internal team) too,” Akwaboah stated.

Innovative products

In terms of innovation, the COO of technology for the financial services firm highlighted a product called Snowflake built from India for their global operations which provided analytics solutions using AI and ML, helping customers to optimise their portfolios.

“This is not just technology talent. But it’s also (demonstrating) the teams understanding of the markets and a smartness to provide solutions. India remains a strong focus for us. I’m personally very excited of what we have built here, and will continue to invest in India,” he added.

Published on May 12, 2022
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