Skoch Consultancy Services, New Delhi, has conferred Skoch Order-of-Merit Award on Andhra Pradesh Grameena Vikas Bank (APGVB) for qualifying among India’s best in two areas for 2014-15 - financial inclusion leveraging bio-metric technology and business leadership.

According to a press release, Skoch Financial Sector Awards seek to recognise people, projects and institutions that have made significant contributions to the cause of financial inclusion, financial deepening, and customer service by innovation or use of technology.

The bank has deployed 1,880 business correspondents/agents in 4,444 unbanked villages to carry out banking transactions leveraging biometric technology. The bank has 728 branches. A total of 49,28,369 savings deposit accounts were opened in villages and the bank could mobilise Rs 173.68 crore from these accounts.

Apart from this, the business growth of Rs 2,659 crore achieved by the bank during 2014-15 using innovating strategies in reaching out to the customers has convinced the Skoch Group to include the bank among India’s best, adds the release.

During the Skoch summit recently in Mumbai, bank’s Chairman V. Narasi Reddy and General Manager Y.N. Sukumar received the awards.