Royal Bank of Canada, Borealis AI partner with Red Hat, NVIDIA on new AI computing platform

The Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) has developed its own cloud-based artificial intelligence (AI) computing platform upon which to create and maintain AI-powered banking applications.

RBC and its AI research institute, Borealis AI, partnered with Red Hat and NVIDIA to build the platform. The private cloud system is powered by Red Hat OpenShift and NVIDIA’s DGX AI computing systems.

The platform has already “improved trading execution and insights,” reduced client calls, and resulted in faster delivery of new apps for RBC clients.

Through its new AI platform, Canada’s largest bank aims to transform the customer banking experience in light of rapid technological change and evolving consumer expectations. The system will be designed to boost operational efficiency for RBC and its customers.

“In today’s ever-changing marketplace, we must always be at the forefront of innovation for our clients,” said Mike Tardif, RBC’s senior VP of tech infrastructure. “We are proud to have delivered a unique AI private cloud capability in-house, leveraging our strong collaboration with Red Hat and NVIDIA. This cloud offers GPU acceleration and containerized platform benefits, and we are well positioned to provide the best experience possible for our customers going forward.”

RBC claims its AI platform is capable of running thousands of simulations and analyzing millions of data points “in a fraction of the time than it could before.” The company calls the self-service system “flexible” and “highly reliable.”

“Modern AI cannot exist without access to high performance computing,” said Foteini Agrafioti, RBC’s chief science officer and head of Borealis AI. “This collaboration means that we can conduct research at scale, and deploy machine learning applications in production with improved efficiency and speed to market.”

Borealis AI is part of the RBC’s Institute for Research. RBC created the AI research centre to address challenges in financial services, from risk applications to fraud and client interaction. Its research focuses include natural language processing, reinforcement learning, and responsible AI.

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“Together with NVIDIA, OpenShift is helping to power the future of not just positive customer experience and overall operational excellence, but is enabling [RBC] to embark on research projects that have the potential to make a lasting impact on the world,” said Chris Wright, Red Hat’s senior VP and CTO.

The bank said its new platform has already “improved trading execution and insights,” reduced client calls, and resulted in faster delivery of new apps for RBC clients.

“Before AI can enable transformative business opportunities, it must first be integrated as a strategic IT platform,” said Charlie Boyle, VP and general manager of DGX Systems at NVIDIA. “By combining innovative technology with their expert knowledge in financial services, the RBC team has created one of the most sophisticated and dynamic AI development infrastructures in Canada.”

According to RBC, the platform “has the potential to benefit the AI industry in Canada, beyond RBC and financial services.”

Image source RBC via company website

Josh Scott

Josh Scott

Josh Scott is a BetaKit staff writer who loves to tell Canadian business and tech stories. His coverage is more complete than his moustache.