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KB Financial pledges to become fintech pioneer

KB Financial Group vowed on Friday to broaden the scope of its technology-based services to lead the country’s financial technology industry.

It said in a press release that “KB Starters Valley,” a project to foster promising fintech start-ups launched in March, is now on track, attracting wide attention from the financial and fintech industry scene.

The project is aimed at providing a total fostering solution for selective fintech start-ups, such as offering office space, investment relations, mentoring and business partnerships. 

A staffer of KB Financial Group participates in a demonstration of the high-end iris-recognition technology during the second round of KB Fintech Day at the group headquarters in Yeouido, Seoul, in August. (KB Financial Group)
A staffer of KB Financial Group participates in a demonstration of the high-end iris-recognition technology during the second round of KB Fintech Day at the group headquarters in Yeouido, Seoul, in August. (KB Financial Group)


To raise awareness of the latest fintech offerings among group staffers, the leading financial group of South Korea has hosted two rounds of “KB Fintech Day,” in May and August. The group demonstrated a variety of biocertification technologies, such as log-in systems by vein, iris, fingerprints, voice and signature.

It is also tightening its grip on online banking services, including smartphone banking and Internet banking. KB plans to lead the future financial market with wider provisions of smartphone banking and “portable branches” on electronic devices. 

Its flagship -- KB Kookmin Bank -- is the first Asian first-tier bank to invest to a bitcoin-trader. In September, the group invested 1.5 billion won ($1.3 million) in “Coin Plug,” a bitcoin trader that operates on block chain technology. 

The investment was made through reference by the KB Fintech Hub Center, a brokerage that promotes strong business networks between KB’s subsidiaries and fintech companies with robust growth potential.

By Chung Joo-won (joowonc@heraldcorp.com)

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