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Friday, Jun 18, 2004

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SBI trims target for core banking link-up

Our Bureau

Mumbai , June 17

THE State Bank of India (SBI) group has missed its target of putting 400 of its branches on the core banking system for March 2004 and has scaled down the target for the current year.

``About 43 branches out of the SBI group have been put on the core banking system as on March 2004. Our target had initially been 400, but there was a delay since we had to amend part of the software,'' Mr A. K. Purwar, Chairman, SBI told presspersons. SBI group's target for putting branches on to the core banking system for this year has been scaled down from 3,000 to 2,000.

On the acquisition front, the bank is looking at acquiring one or two small and medium sized banks in Asia and Africa. ``We are in talks and we have plenty of capital with our capital adequacy ratio being over 13 per cent. We are ready to spare any amount for the acquisition,'' said Mr Purwar. The bank has also started implementing McKinsey's suggestions. Asked whether global mutual funds such as Cardiff and Societe Generale were interested in SBI Mutual Fund, Mr Purwar said, ``In all our non-core businesses such as credit card and life insurance we have done much better with a foreign partner .'' But he was non-committal on whether a due diligence process was on.

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