Rostelecom, VTB Launch Joint Big Data Project

Russian telecommunications company Rostelecom and state-run banking and financial group VTB are launching a big data platform and will offer it as a service to other organizations, reported

The two companies signed an agreement in November, and the initial investment in the project was set at 1 billion ($15.7 million), split equally.

“The new platform will facilitate the structuring of big data collected in the economy’s various sectors and, based on it, the building of digital solutions that correspond to contemporary market expectations,” said Andrei Kostin, VTB’s president and chairman of the board. “I am sure that the improvement of the quality and accessibility of big data is one of the chief factors for successful development of a digital economy in Russia.”

At the heart of the joint venture will be a big data platform open to all interested participants in sectors such as telecoms, financial services, retail, and construction, as well as public sector organizations. All data added to the platform will be checked for legality and quality and will be anonymized and encrypted.

Alexei Chamaiko, business development director at Rostelecom, told Russian media that the platform will use cryptographic technologies that “are required to achieve integrity, confidentiality, and privacy of data”.

VTB and Rostelecom plan to collect various kinds of data, including consumers’ age, gender, purchasing history and movements. Possible uses for the platform include the creation of algorithms for attracting and retaining customers or measuring creditworthiness.

So far, VTB and Rostelectom are the only participants in the venture, but the two companies envisage adding more partners, such as providers of depersonalized data or developers of big data solutions, and they do not rule out acquiring firms operating in that field.

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