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SBF, V3 Group's fintech unit set up digital academy for SMEs

THE Singapore Business Federation (SBF) and V3 Fintech, the fintech arm of lifestyle products group V3, have set up a digital academy to help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) train their digital competencies. 

The digital academy, Beyond Lab, will focus on areas such as data analytics - including that to support green solutions - and fintech innovations that can help Singapore businesses "optimise and expand operations locally and in the region", said SBF and V3 Fintech on Thursday. 

Consultancy Ernst & Young Advisory (EY) will be brought in to advise on content and curriculum development. Beyond Lab is expected to launch its first programme in early-2020.

Today, SMEs can make use of technologies like the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence and e-payments to optimise operations and enhance profitability, noted V3 Fintech's senior adviser Gan Chee Yen.

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Through Beyond Lab, SMEs can "collectively learn, connect and adopt relevant digital initiatives that boost their competencies and competitiveness", said Mr Gan, a former Temasek veteran and seasoned financial sector leader.

Mr Gan joined V3 Fintech from Fullerton Financial Holdings, where he had been CEO. Prior to that, he was co-chief investment officer, senior managing director, special projects, and head of China market at Temasek International. He was also chief financial officer of Temasek.

V3 Fintech was set up in October to pursue related opportunities in the region, as well as develop digital financial services, especially for SMEs, The Business Times had reported.

Meanwhile, SBF chief executive Ho Meng Kit hopes that the digital academy will be an affordable and effective means for SMEs to cultivate "a digital culture" and develop the data analytics and fintech capabilities they need.

"Our companies, especially SMEs, need to align themselves with how the world has changed," Mr Ho said.