August 25, 2016

Deep Learning approach to text analysis to drive efficiencies in investment research in unstructured financial data

TORONTO--Manulife's Lab of Forward Thinking (LOFT) is collaborating with indico data solutions, a Boston-based company that specializes in Deep Learning. This collaboration is part of a strategic effort to leverage innovative technologies such as Artifical Intelligence (AI), blockchain and virtual reality.

Manulife's LOFT will use indico's platform to develop an artificial intelligence (AI) and Deep Learning tool to analyze unstructured financial data. Using Deep Learning, Manulife will be able to analyze data from news articles, analyst reports and other similar sources and present recommendations that could help investment researchers and portfolio managers make more informed decisions faster than ever before.

"Deep Learning, while proven in the realms of the Facebook's and Google's of the world, is just starting to come into its own as an enterprise capability," said Slater Victoroff, indico CEO and co-founder. "We have spent the past few years building a platform that significantly lowers the barriers of use around Deep Learning and this opens up tremendous potential around unstructured data analytics. John Hancock and Manulife are on the leading edge looking to more fully utilize their unstructured data assets to better serve their various constituents."

Manulife's LOFT is using indico's Deep Learning platform to decipher natural language and more efficiently train the computer to extract insights that can be tailored to each analyst's individual requirements – one of indico's core strengths. Manulife - and under its John Hancock brand in the United States – has established a global network of LOFTs in Boston, Toronto and Singapore.

"indico will help us accelerate our use of Deep Learning to improve the decision-making capabilities of our analysts, portfolio managers and researchers," said Greg Framke, Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer, Manulife. "By introducing new capabilities that we know will add to our user experience and overall impact we will improve the customer experience."

The announcement follows on Manulife LOFT's recent collaboration with Nervana Systems to build the next generation of intelligent applications.

"Though it's early, we are now starting to see some compelling opportunities revolving around deep learning powered applications that can help knowledge workers become much more efficient," said Vishal Daga, Chief Customer Officer, indico. "We are continuing to invest in our product capabilities to make it easier for our customers to deploy our product in this vein especially in the context of the financial services industry. We are thrilled about the innovative work that the Manulife team has been doing and look forward to continuing our partnership with them."

indico provides a state-of-the-art machine learning platform for text and image analysis that can be deployed in the cloud or on premise and utilized via a simple to use web service. This, for the first time, enables companies to automatically extract meaningful insight from unstructured data at scale regardless of their size or capability. Furthermore, indico's platform capabilities enable its customers to quickly develop highly accurate new models that are specific to their needs in a fraction of the time and effort that would be otherwise needed. indico is privately held and headquartered in Boston, MA.

Manulife and John Hancock's Lab of Forward Thinking (LOFT) explores emerging technologies, new business processes and consumer needs to deliver innovative solutions. Through LOFT labs in Boston, Singapore and Toronto, teams discover, incubate and accelerate new technologies, products, services and processes. The fail-fast culture gives every idea a fighting chance to succeed.

Manulife Financial Corporation is a leading international financial services group providing forward-thinking solutions to help people with their big financial decisions. We operate as John Hancock in the United States, and Manulife elsewhere. We provide financial advice, insurance and wealth and asset management solutions for individuals, groups and institutions. At the end of 2015, we had approximately 34,000 employees, 63,000 agents, and thousands of distribution partners, serving 20 million customers.

 

 

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