Only 24% of banking CEOs are speaking publicly about their AI plans. This is even though banks that demonstrate their AI leadership strategies are seeing improved market performance, dominating industry conversations and crowding out the competition. That is according to a new report by benchmarking AI platform Evident. Evident assesses 50 of the world’s biggest banks against a range of leadership metrics. 

Evident notes that shares in the five highest-scoring banks within the leadership pillar of Evident’s methodology outperformed the competition by 1.7x over the past 12 months. The banks in question are JPMorgan Chase, TD Bank, BNP Paribas, Intesa Sanpaolo and UBS. This demonstrates the urgency for banks to successfully articulate their AI vision and leadership credentials externally, a contradiction to the one in four that are currently being vocal about their AI plans.

The majority of big banks are failing to set the AI agenda through their leadership comms. While 54% of banks have established AI as a strategic objective with investors, just four (BNP Paribas, DBS Bank, JPMorgan Chase, and Société Générale) publicly disclose the number of AI use cases and expected outcomes from projects that further their AI roadmap in investor relations materials. The report suggests that banks’ AI claims are not being reinforced by their CEO’s.

Four banks make up 45% of AI mentions in the media

Evident’s research also finds that just 10 banks accounted for nearly 80% of industry-specific mentions of AI across leading news outlets, with Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, and Morgan Stanley generating nearly 45% of all media mentions. This is largely due to their senior executive teams’ willingness to discuss the topic.

Alexandra Mousavizadeh, Evident Co-Founder and CEO said: “Against a backdrop of unrelenting hype and noise, every bank is under pressure to communicate its AI roadmap and strategic vision, as well as where it expects to achieve ROI for its ongoing AI transformation efforts.

“A handful of banking leaders clearly recognise the need to be vocal and show leadership around AI. Not just to clarify and reinforce their institution’s response to a technological paradigm shift, but to anticipate questions from investors, customers, and prospective talent. However, many of their peers simply aren’t showing up to the debate. The banking leaders who lead the external discourse and demonstrate their credentials have a massive opportunity to dominate the AI conversation and steal a march on their rivals.”

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By GlobalData

Evident’s report shows that the majority of big banks are struggling with a continued disconnect between their overarching AI positioning and their exec team’s commitment to telling their AI story. 95% of the banks covered in the report have issued an AI-specific press release in the past five years. However, over the same period, fewer than half of bank CEOs have discussed specific AI themes and issues in the media. 70% of those who have broached the topic restrict their commentary to general tech trends, rather than discussing the specific implications for their bank.