Money & Banking

Oriental Bank to axe redundant branches

| | Updated on: Feb 23, 2011
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Oriental Bank of Commerce wants to do away with redundant branches in its network which arose due to the merger of Global Trust Bank with the bank. This measure would help improve its CASA (current account savings account) ratio, according to a top official of the bank.

“Thanks to the merger of GTB with our bank, there is certain redundancy in the branch network. We want to combine businesses of some branches and under the RBI's relaxed licences policy, use these licences for opening branches in residential areas that are not represented. That will help improve our CASA,” Mr Nagesh Pydah, Chairman and Managing Director, Oriental Bank of Commerce, told Business Line .

The bank is already on the job, and “in the next 90 days you will see a substantial difference,” he said, pointing out that about 65-70 branches have been identified across the country in metros and urban towns. Redundancy normally comes in a metro branch after it reaches a certain age and hence the growth plateaus, he said. Currently, the bank has 1,608 branches and 1,200 ATMs in the country.

The bank's CASA levels are currently around 25 per cent, and one of the priorities for the new chairman and managing director of this bank is to take it to about 30-32 per cent in a year. In order to achieve this, the bank has campaigns targeting specific groups including students. “We have also launched a concerted drive for salary accounts,” said Mr Pydah.

Besides, the financial inclusion programme also threw up tremendous opportunities, he pointed out. The bank has been allotted 570 villages for the drive, of which it has to cover 300 by March 2011.

The bank has also drawn up an interim business plan to reach business of Rs 4 lakh crore by March 2013; currently it has Rs 2.2-lakh crore business. “Except that the liquidity constraint, there is not much of a challenge to achieve this,” he said.

Published on February 23, 2011

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