FE Best Bank Awards: A toast to the best and the brightest banks

FE banking

PUBLIC SECTOR BANK

BANK OF BARODA

Winner

MD Mallya,

Former CMD, Bank of Baroda

Bank of Baroda (BoB) has managed to double its business every three years, growing by a compounded 25-26%, a creditable achievement given that it is among the larger banks in the country. BoB opened nearly 500 branches last year and is hoping to add another 500 this year. With a strong international presence, BoB is present in about 25 countries. However, a fair chunk of its incremental business comes from India's rural and semi-urban areas, where around 60% of its branches are located. The bulk of the bank's incremental business is being sourced from these areas. At the core of BoB's strategy lies branch expansion, and the bank now has nearly 4,000 branches.

New private sector bank

HDFC Bank

Winner

Aditya Puri,

Chairman & Managing Director, HDFC Bank

HDFC Bank has almost always been a role model for the banking industry given its steady profitability and low delinquencies. The bank has by and large stayed away from the big-ticket infrastructure space and in the past few years has changed the way it works. The focus now is on semi-urban and rural markets, which today bring 40% of the business. With the average loan size between R10,000 and R25,000, HDFC Bank believes it's a profitable, and more importantly, scalable business. The target client base is 10 million families in the next four years. Of the bank's 2,300 branches, over 40% are in semi-urban and rural locations.

Old private sector bank

TAMILNAD MERCANTILE bank

Winner

AK JAGANNATHAN,

Former MD & CEO, Tamilnad Mercantile Bank

From humble beginnings in 1921, as a bank that catered mainly to the Nadar trading community of Tamil Nadu, Tamilnad Mercantile Bank (TMB) now has a much bigger clientele. Although primarily a retail bank, TMB has customers from local businesses to NRIs and offers a spectrum of services. it has grown its business by more than 50% in just three years and hopes to go public soon. TMB is looking to go paperless by next year through seamless integration at every level. The bank is in the process of identifying rural and semi-urban centres where there is a huge potential, and plans to increase its network to 275 branches and 300 ATMs before March 2012.

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