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The appointment underlines the importance among banks to stay relevant at a time when the traditional banking model is changing as technologically savvy new competitors look to take market share away from incumbent players.

Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail

Bank of Montreal announced that it has appointed Niti Badarinath as its new head of North American channels, in a move that signals an enhanced focus on digital banking services.

Mr. Badarinath will focus on integrating how customers experience services at BMO, whether they do their banking at traditional bank branches, online or with mobile devices.

His appointment underlines the importance among banks to stay relevant at a time when the traditional banking model is changing as technologically savvy new competitors look to take market share away from incumbent players.

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Mr. Badarinath is new to BMO. Most recently, he led digital banking strategies at Minneapolis-based U.S. Bancorp, where he was senior vice-president of mobile banking and money movement. During his time there, he was named by American Banker as "digital banker of the year" in 2014.

Previously, he was also executive vice-president of Global Direct Bank at Citigroup, and held senior roles at International Business Machines Corp., PricewaterhouseCoopers and Ernst & Young.

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