Money & Banking

We have maintained 30% growth over last 5-6 years: South Indian Bank MD

L. N. Revathy Coimbatore | Updated on March 12, 2018

Dr. V A Joseph, Chairman & CEO , South Indian Bank

South Indian Bank has set for itself a total business target of Rs 1,00,000 crore by March 2014. The bank envisions achieving a total business of Rs 75,000 crore, a network of 750 CBS branches, 750 ATMs and employee headcount of 7,500 by the end of fiscal 2013.

Target surpassed

“At the present growth pace, such targets are not unachievable. Looking back, I will say that we had doubled our growth between 2005 and 2008 to reach a total business of Rs 25,000 crore. And in the just-concluded fiscal (2010-11), we have surpassed our target of Rs 48,000 crore to touch Rs 50,560 crore,” SIB Chief Executive and Managing Director, Dr V. A. Joseph, told Business Line.

And this Kerala-headquartered bank seems to be making a habit of surpassing business targets. According to Dr Joseph, the bank has maintained a 29-30 per cent growth rate (year-on-year) over the last 5-6 years.

Asked to share the strategy adopted for surpassing business goals, the chief said: “As a policy, we start working towards implementing our business plan from the beginning of the year and not chase targets from the second or third quarters. This, coupled with expansion of our branch network, has helped add business.”

The bank has a network of 641 branches (the target for fiscal 2010-11 was 640). It is planning to add another 59 branches this fiscal.

Young staff

But that's not all. Bringing youngsters on board has helped in a big way, acknowledges the SIB Chief.

According to him, around 40 per cent of the bank's staff is less than 26 years of age. “These youngsters are quite aggressive, tech savvy. We recruit chartered accountants, management graduates and engineers almost every six months.”

Asked if youngsters were experienced enough to handle certain niche jobs, he said: “We have a combination of seniors and youngsters. While the seniors are not that tech savvy, youngsters' grasp of technology is rather quick. The drive is towards people with good technical skills and specialists officers because of the present-day technological advancements in banking services.”

To a query on rising manpower cost, he said “staff cost is actually coming down because seniors are retiring. The young entrant gets about a third of the pay that a banker with over three decades of experience would command. Further, there is greater mobility amongst the younger lot.”

Apart from these, Dr Joseph said, “We are an 83-year-old bank with a loyal customer base. These customers come back to us in times of need.”

He further added that the bank had done extremely well in gold loan portfolio. “Twenty per cent of our advances is in gold loan and there is hardly any NPA in such advances.”

It may be noted here that the banking regulator has given its in-principle approval to SIB for altering its object clause in the Memorandum of Association to form a non-deposit-taking NBFC, as a wholly-owned subsidiary of the bank.

Published on April 03, 2011

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