We’re available from 9 am to 6 pm on weekdays. Contact Us.
Artificial Intelligence: Separating the hype from reality

On June 5th, more than 200 participants gathered at the headquarters of BGL BNP Paribas for the third edition of the Luxembourg Analytics Summit, organized by SAS, in collaboration with the Luxembourgish bank. During an inspiring session of talks, local and international experts took the stage to discuss the latest trends and use cases in the field of AI.

Marc Aguilar (Chief Data Officer at BGL BNP Paribas) officially opened the summit: "Today, it is possible to develop an algorithm in 8 weeks, but infrastructure and data sourcing strategies are needed. Also, quality data is required to work on developing an Artificial Intelligence". According to the CDO, data is the new asset which must be managed through the use of data quality management tools. It requires governance and a sourcing strategy: where does the data come from? Who do we buy it from? BGL BNP Paribas has opened a lab center that is currently working, with a startup, on an AI-powered solution aiming at detecting fraud. The bank is also focusing its efforts on the use of Machine Learning when it comes to authorizing payments. For instance, if a customer has multiple bank accounts, but one of his payments cannot be processed because a couple of euros are missing on one of these accounts, a tool gathering all his data might help to evaluate to risk and use the money on another account. "At BGL BNP Paribas, we decided to work on applying AI to improve operations. Implementing new technologies takes time, and, according to us, it is easier to measure the ROI on operational efficiencies," Marc Aguilar added.

Master of Ceremony Rein Bryssinck (Sales Director at SAS Luxembourg) then took the stage and highlighted the fact that every single industry, work function and aspect of our personal lives will be affected by Artificial Intelligence. "It will notably replace from 20% to 40% of today's jobs, while creating new ones," he added.

Mr. Bryssinck welcomed his colleague Michel Philippens, Head of Customer Solutions at SAS, who delivered an inspiring speech entitled "Artificial Intelligence: Separating the hype from reality". He started: "My first encounter with AI was the TV show called Knight Rider, which was created more than 40 years ago: a self-driving, intelligent car. And nowadays, most of its features are being produced".  He then shared a definition of AI and explained that it can now be applied to a wide and diverse set of human tasks, from blocking fraud, processing payments, help with loan applications, etc. "But the most powerful tool, behind AI, is analytics," added Mr. Philippens, who continued: "AI can make automated decisions or support complex human decisions". There are several examples of companies that work with SAS to leverage AI and data to create new services. SciSports, for example, is a company which gathers data on soccer players to assess their performance. Then, the experts resell these insights to professional clubs. Michel Philippens also mentioned the fight against colon cancer, as "AI has the power to change healthcare". SAS is currently working with the Amsterdam Cancer Research Center to analyze the appropriate time when treatments should be proposed. On the marketing side, AI will act as a relief for customer service and aims at predicting the intent of the customer. "One of the best promises of AI is also that it will facilitate the green lane: it will make sure safe customers can pass through a green lane, making the service easier and faster," Michel explained. As a conclusion, he said that AI offers a myriad of possibilities but that professionals should try to find a platform to cover all technology capabilities.

SAS and BGL BNP Paribas then welcomed David Hagen (Head of IT supervision & Supervision of Support PFS at CSSF) who focused mainly on the use of AI in the financial sectors and the regulatory challenges it implies. "When it comes to AI, sometimes, the human is in the loop, sometimes he is not. Therefore, finding a unique definition is complicated as the scope is very large," started Mr. Hagen. Nowadays, many solutions such as RPA, chatbots, KYC intelligent agents, text recognition, credit scoring, etc, are powered by AI. The CSSF expert also highlighted the difference between ethics and governance: "ethics is about what is acceptable to do with AI (the goal), while governance is about how AI should be used (the means)".  According to Mr. Hagen and the CSSF, outsourcing is one of the most important points as it must be mastered by regulators and financial institutions. He then listed some of the challenges brought through the use of AI: project management and costs, change management, etc. He concluded: "AI is disruptive for financial institutions and understanding the main issues of AI is key for the board of directors. Moreover, AI should not lead to a loss of control over the business. Concerning regulators, they should also benefit from AI in the months to come. It is a true game-changer in terms of governance, risks and control."