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Tuesday, May 30, 2000



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Vysya leasing subsidiary converted to marketing co

Our Bureau


VYSYA Bank has converted its leasing subsidiary, Vysya Bank Leasing, into a marketing company. The leasing company, with a new name, would be the bank's marketing arm in future.

In its new avatar, the leasing company would beef up its current equity base of Rs. 2 crores to Rs. 20 crores and even Vysya's collaborator, Bank Brussels Lambert (BBL), is likely to pick up a stake. However, Mr. K.R. Ramamoorthy, Chairman and CEO of the bank, was not willing to comment on that.

The new company, with marketing of (Vysya's) retail products as its primary objective, will also be setting up call centres and telemarketing facilities, Mr. Ramamoorthy said at the bank's annual general meeting here on Monday. With its aggressive retail banking push, Vysya is hoping to increase the scope for cross-selling its products in an inter-connected environment. Incidentally, the bank has taken up a Rs. 60-crore technology project -- VysyAMulya, which envisages inter-connecting of 125 b ranches in the first phase.

In fact, the chairman's address to the shareholders revolved around the whole project giving an insight into Vysya's new technology focus. The bank has been firming up tie-ups and agreements at a feverish pace in recent times. It has already roped in Sat yam Infoway, Global Telesystems, Bangalore Labs and IBM for its techie moves.

The implementation of VysyAMulya will bring in substantial changes in current process with impact on people and organisation, said Mr. Ramamoorthy. To upgrade the skills of its workforce in the changed environment, Vysya has engaged Eicher Consultancy Se rvices for a period of 15 months. ECS is expected to advise and assist the bank in managing the entire dimensions of change management, having implications on people.

The shareholders also approved the appointment of M. Bart Hellemans, a BBL nominee as Deputy Managing Director of the bank, besides other regular resolutions, unanimously. The meeting also approved the induction of IFC, Washington as a shareholder which recently acquired a 10 per cent stake in the bank.

Pay more please!

AT the Vysya Bank AGM today, there was an unusual demand from the shareholders. They wanted the Chairman, Mr. Ramamoorthy's salary of Rs. 75,000 per month to be hiked to at least Rs. 3-5 lakhs per month! The argument was that when infotech companies were offering such attractive compensation to their employees, it was not fair for the board to offer such a low pay to the chairman of Vysya Bank.

A member was even concerned that Mr. Ramamoorthy might be lured away by other private sector banks at much better pay scales. And their concern was not solely for the chairman. The members felt that even the BBL nominee, Mr. Bart Hellemans, was underpaid with a salary of Rs. 65,000 per month. Of course, the higher salary offer from members had a tag to it. They wanted Mr. Ramamoorthy to put in more hours at office, something like the IT sector!

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