Though Lakshmi Vilas Bank’s net profit growth was only marginal (Rs 65 lakh) in the first quarter of the current fiscal, P. R. Somasundaram, its Managing Director, said: ‘It was an uphill task in a challenging environment. We have sustained. I am now confident of taking the bank to the next pedestal.”

The bank’s net profit in the first quarter rose to Rs 25.23 crore from Rs 24.58 crore in the corresponding previous year quarter.

And like the rest in the industry, LVB too reported higher slippages in asset quality. Its gross non-performing assets (NPAs) in the first quarter surged to 3.58 per cent from 2.09 per cent in the corresponding quarter of the previous year, while the net NPA increased to 2.21 per cent (0.98 per cent).

“These slippages are short term and will be addressed before the close of this fiscal. Fortunately the slippages are not sector-specific,” Somasundaram told Business Line.

The bank’s total income for the quarter ended June 30, 2012, grew by 25 per cent to Rs 461.25 crore (Rs 369.94 crore).

Deposits rose 19 per cent to Rs 14,136 crore (Rs 11,844 crore), while advances grew by over 25 per cent to Rs 10,504 crore (Rs 8,362 crore).

The bank would continue to invest on increasing its network to reach out to more customers, and will focus on the retail segment. “The SME sector will be our target segment for growth, as there is huge opportunity in this space,” LVB MD said.

lnr@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on August 10, 2012)
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