Money & Banking

Kotak Mahindra Bank plans to go national

| Updated on: Feb 23, 2011
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Kotak Mahindra Bank wants to get broader and deeper within the country — either through greater presence or through the inorganic route.

“We aspire to be national, including wholesale banking. We also want to see how we can get bigger. Inorganic (route) is something that also interests us. That's something on our radar,” Mr Uday Kotak, Executive Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, Kotak Mahindra Bank, told reporters here.

The three areas for acquisitions that interest the group are banking, brokerage and asset management. “We are value-focused, and we want to make sure that what we acquire should be a good risk reward for our stakeholders,” he said, adding that nothing has materialised yet. The bank has enough capital to “grow the balance sheet at current levels and make investments in areas we think are sustainable,” he said.

Adequate Capital

Mr Kotak said that the bank, with a capital adequacy ratio of over 20 per cent, has a “significant ability to invest, lend and grow without being short of capital”. The bank's tier-I capital is about 18 per cent. Capital is not an issue for the bank, and “making good use of capital is our focus,” he added.

In order to have a wider reach, the bank is also focusing on smaller customers, and has significantly increased its portfolio in car finance, commercial vehicles, tractors and other such areas that serve small customers, pointed out Mr Kotak. The bank plans to take its branch network to 500 branches by March 2012. Currently, it has 300 branches across the country.

Technology would also help them in the process, he said, pointing out that in future the banking industry has a big opportunity to be transformed by technology. “The way to deepen to be much more driven by technology,” he added.

There are also plans to recruit 200-300 people a month for branch banking and support network.

Published on February 23, 2011

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