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NIBC Bank drives regulatory compliance and analytics innovation with Simian™ and MonkeyProof Solutions

Simian lowers the threshold for using technology and makes it more tangible and easy to get started.

Mathis Habich, Head of Advanced Analytics, NIBC Bank N.V.

About NIBC

NIBC was founded in 1945, with the aim of providing financing to visionary entrepreneurs who helped rebuild the Netherlands after World War II. Over the years, NIBC has evolved into an entrepreneurial bank focusing on financing assets from private housing to rental property, commercial real estate, vessels, infrastructure, cars and equipment.

NIBC employs around 700 people and is headquartered in The Hague, the Netherlands. As a mid-sized financial institution, with satellites in the United Kingdom, Germany and Belgium, NIBCs business model is differentiated from peers in that it is foremost an asset-based financier that focuses on specific asset classes where it is able to add value.

Its 2023-2025 strategy for data-driven transformation aims to create a data-driven culture, and provide the proper infrastructure and tooling for reaping the dividend of asset data.

To accelerate the process of becoming a fully data-driven company, NIBC has recently formed the Department of Data and Analytics, which combines various efforts that existed in other departments, and are now centralized.

Mathis: “In order to become fully data-driven you need to create a unified ecosystem including centralized data, and you then require analytics with the proper tooling to accomplish that”.

One of MonkeyProof Solutions key achievements is helping us create our Advanced Analytics Portal. This really showed the power of analytics solutions that can be adapted to the bank’s needs.

Mathis Habich, Head of Advanced Analytics, NIBC Bank N.V.

How the collaboration started

Mathis has been working with NIBC for several years in multiple capacities (treasury, market and credit risk) – which gained him a broad and deep understanding of the bank’s infrastructure, tools, and processes – before assuming the role Head of Advanced Analytics in April 2023. During that tenure, Dimitar Mechev, Head of Modeling and Data Analytics, frequently teamed up with Mathis on technical challenges that needed to be resolved.

The door opener for the Advanced Analytics collaboration with Monkeyproof Solutions was MATLAB, which is primarily used in the Modeling and Data Analytics team, who have been partnering with MonkeyProof Solutions since 2019.

Mathis: “In-house developments in our industry oftentimes in the past have not adhered to software principles. These developments often ran on local machines and probably did their job just fine but somehow you then lacked flexibility, extendibility and scalability – because the person who developed them just had a single focus. With the Advanced Analytics Portal we can consolidate these aspects, with the additional benefit of increased control.”

The applications on the Advanced Analytics Portal are a trail blazer to show what is possible. The interest we get to support business cases in other domains is really encouraging. This is something new for us, this has not existed before.

Mathis Habich, Head of Advanced Analytics, NIBC Bank N.V.

How Simian helps drive compliance and productivity

In the world of Simian, domain expertise meets application development and web deployment. Simian allows modelers to seamlessly move from ideas to validated prototypes to production, without leaving their modeling language of choice: MATLAB, Python or Julia.

At NIBC, Simian Wrapper supports the calculation of the bank’s AIRB credit-risk model. Simian Wrapper ensures that data integration and lineage are fully taken care of, and full reproduction of scheduled model runs is guaranteed.

NIBCs Advanced Analytics Portal provides access to multiple supported GUI applications, including an Interest-only Mortgages Risk Management application used by Retail Banking. Simian GUI adds the user interaction, and Simian Portal provides secure and authorized access to supported applications.

Mathis: “The teams that are using the Portal really appreciate the ease of use and are very happy. The connection of Code, GUI, and User Experience is key to that success.”

Another MonkeyProof Solutions achievement is related to Regulatory Compliance. Integrating Simian Wrapper ensures computational reproducibility of model runs, while NIBC DevOps arranged the underlying automation and proper version control.

Mathis Habich, Head of Advanced Analytics, NIBC Bank N.V.

How Simian helps pave the way for innovation

The regulatory and risk applications that are now running on NIBCs Advanced Analytics Portal help make the business case for other analytics projects. NIBC is now in the early stages of leveraging its Advanced Analytics Portal to develop new business models, including more and better marketing strategies.

Mathis: “With such examples we can showcase what is possible to other departments, provide insight to what it costs, and ask about their business ideas towards their use cases.”

The way we interacted was always very familiar, collaborative and direct, with a positive attitude – also when there were obstacles or problems to be solved, because that is what happens in software development – I like and appreciate that.

Mathis Habich, Head of Advanced Analytics, NIBC Bank N.V.