Aman Narain, one of Asia’s most prominent digital banking experts, has left the finance sector for a senior role at Google in Singapore as the tech giant continues to hire from banks in the Republic. The former Standard Chartered veteran joined Google earlier this week as regional head of e-commerce, retail and travel partnerships for Japan and Asia-Pacific.
He previously spent a year as the Singapore-based head of digital and fintech for APAC at Schroders, a newly created role focused on driving “digital transformation across channels”, according to his online profile.
This is the second time in just two months that Google has recruited from a bank in Singapore. As we revealed at the time, Google hired Carl Bachman Kharazmi, the APAC head of cloud engineering at DBS, in November.
While banks in Asia – including Credit Suisse, DBS and OCBC – want to hire more technologists from outside the finance sector, Narain’s and Kharazmi’s departures are reminders that talent also flows the other way. Large tech firms are creating more local jobs as Singapore transitions from a sales hub to an engineering centre.
Google opened a new campus-style APAC headquarters in Singapore in November 2016 and employs about 1,000 people there. Local companies such as Grab and Sea are also hiring from the finance industry.
Narain was at Standard Chartered between 1999 and 2014, starting out as a relationship manager and then moving into strategy and corporate development roles. He got his first digital banking job in 2007 and was appointed the global head of internet and mobile banking the following year. In 2012, Narain became Stan Chart’s global head of digital banking, based in Singapore.
In September 2014, he left the bank to set up CodeBlu, a digital banking consultancy and accelerator. Narain moved to BankBazaar.com, an India-headquartered financial marketplace part funded by Amazon, 15 months later as CEO for its international business.
Image credit: ultraforma, Getty