Deutsche Bank in partnership talks with SoftBank-backed OakNorth - source

LONDON (Reuters) - Deutsche Bank DBKGn.DE is in talks with SoftBank-backed 9984.T British fintech firm OakNorth to use the latter's credit analysis and monitoring platform, a source with knowledge of the discussions told Reuters.

FILE PHOTO: The headquarters of Germany's Deutsche Bank are photographed in Frankfurt, Germany, July 8, 2019. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach/File Photo

The troubled German bank is piloting OakNorth’s technology with a view to formalising the partnership, the source said.

The software uses data about a prospective borrower such as the financial performance of its peers and sentiment about its brand from online reviews to help inform lending decisions.

Deutsche is seeking to return to its roots as a lender to companies in its home market as part of a sweeping restructuring.

OakNorth and Deutsche Bank declined to comment.

OakNorth, Britain's most valuable fintech firm, earlier this month announced the first enterprise-wide agreement with a bank to use its technology when it inked a five-year deal with Dutch lender NIBC Bank NV NIBC.AS.

The British firm says its technology helps banks make better decisions on small business loans by using the level of data analytics that banks normally only use for $25 million-plus medium-sized deals.

OakNorth is in talks with ten banks, OakNorth Chief Executive Rishi Khosla told Reuters last week, as it seeks to monetise its credit analysis platform by signing up lenders in the United States, Europe and Asia.

The British firm raised $440 million from investors including Japan’s SoftBank Group in a February funding round that valued OakNorth at $2.8 billion.

Deutsche Bank on Monday embarked on a 7.4 billion euro (£6.6 billion) restructuring that will cut around 18,000 jobs as it tries to reverse years of declining performance.

Reuters was not able to determine whether the restructuring could affect the partnership talks with OakNorth.

Reporting by Lawrence White. Editing by Jane Merriman