UBB and DZI open SurfStudio Innovation Lab

The Belgian financial group KBC has opened a Bulgarian branch of its innovation lab SurfStudio@UBB and SurfStudio@DZI, which has already been operating successfully in Belgium, Ireland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary. For the opening in Bulgaria arrived Eric Luts, Chief Innovation Manager for the KBC Group.

SurfStudio aims to become a platform for sharing of innovations and exchange of ideas at UBB, DZI and other companies in the Group. The lab symbolizes their philosophy of researching and implementing innovative practices not only in their core banking and insurance business but also in a wider range of innovations. The space has been equipped with various achievements of modern technologies and is intended to inspire employees to share their ideas, experiment with different solutions, seek optimal interaction with technological achievements and apply innovations in their activity.

“SurfStudio@UBB and SurfStudio@DZI is a place of inspiration. A venue to remind us that the future is already happening and we want to be an active part in it.” In these words, UBB’s Chief Executive Officer and Country Manager of KBC Group in Bulgaria Peter Andronov opened the new place for ideas on 13th floor in UBB Millennium Center.

The first development of SurfStudio@DZI is a joint project of VIVACOM, DZI and Sirma Group Holding. It is called e-SOS and is a free mobile application for quick contact with emergency teams and with the user's personal contacts. The SOS button enables the user to connect directly to 112 teams, as well as to share one’s exact location and health-related data with the selected emergency contacts. The app allows tracking selected contacts on the map to facilitate being it touch with one’s closest people.

“The most valuable thing about e-SOS is the combination of the ability to track location and make emergency call even without an Internet connection, and sharing a health-related data with lifesaving information such as blood type, allergies and medication when it comes to an emergency", explained Kosta Cholakov, CEO of DZI.

Christophe De Mil, Innovation Leader of KBC Group in Bulgaria, has also unveiled some of the upcoming innovation lab projects such as launching robots that will automate routine processes in the daily work of several departments at UBB.