Bank of New York Mellon has opened an innovation hub in Palo Alto, Calif.

The bank's Silicon Valley "innovation center" will develop technology to address client needs and improve internal operations. The office will focus on a range of product areas, including mobile development, data analytics and information security.

"BNY Mellon is committed to becoming the financial industry's technology leader," said Suresh Kumar, the company's chief information officer, in a press release Monday. "There's no better place in the world to do this than in Silicon Valley, one of the greatest centers of technology and innovation."

The new office will be overseen by Michael Gardner, a managing director at the bank. He recently joined BNY Mellon from Apigee, a San Jose-based analytics firm where he led research and development. He has also held senior-level engineering positions at eBay, also headquartered in San Jose, as well as at LiveOps, a cloud-based call center in Redwood, Calif. His mission will be to foster innovation to develop new offerings, improve customer service and reduce time-to-market.

The new office is part of a larger push at the $337 billion-asset investment bank to focus on innovation. It already operates two innovation offices in India and one in New Jersey.

BNY Mellon has begun offering incentives for employees to pitch start-up ideas. Employees can win the chance to work on their ideas full time. They may also qualify to receive 10% of the value of a winning proposal.

Additionally, the bank offers an "Innovation Boot Camp" for employees, in partnership with Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. The program offers guidance on developing, evaluating and implementing business proposals.

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